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Design is hacking how we learn
                                            David Sherwin, AIGA Into the Woods 2012
       ...
Time for a pop quiz!
Question 1: Can design solve most
of society’s biggest problems?*




* Be sure to show your work.
Design can solve society’s
biggest problems…
Design can solve society’s
biggest problems…
if we cultivate a love
of learning through
the design process.
Design can solve society’s
biggest problems…
if we cultivate a love
of learning through
the design process.
This is a talk...
Let’s start by talking
about survival.
CHALLENGE

Understand the nature and value of
connection, and the digital connection
models of urban girls in Nairobi.
APPROACH

Empower girls in local girl groups through
explorer training so they can collaboratively
plan and co-design solu...
FOUR WEEKS
explorer training




  week        1
              1              22                 33                4


   ...
FOUR WEEKS
research objectives




 week    1                2            3            4


   FOUNDATIONS          FOCUS  ...
Week 1: Creating sparks to build friendships
Week 2: Becoming explorers and storytellers
Week 3: Exposing latent creativity and wisdom
Week 4: Encouraging co-leadership and collective action
Future focus: Growing and networking local girl groups
LEARNINGS

The process and the product
had great value to the community.
Girls honed practical skills by being
exposed to ...
I'VE BEEN SO HAPPY
  SINCE STARTING THIS
       PROGRAM OF
     EXPLORING. I FEEL
MORE CONFIDENT THAN
THE TIME THAT I CAME...
LEARNINGS

There are few substitutes for in-person
communication when encouraging
local community problem solving.
Technol...
Practicing design is
empowering.
It helps people see the
world in a different way—
and consider how to
change it for the be...
How we
are often
taught
                                   THEORY                PRACTICE




                            ...
How
designers
learn                                                                  PRACTICE
                            ...
“Designers have the ability and the training to harness
the tacit knowledge of the unconscious mind, rather than
being lim...
How
designers
anyone                                                                 PRACTICE
can try                     ...
How can I do this in
my community?
How can I do this in
my community?
“Design situations that allow
equitable solutions to emerge…”
—Scott Boylston
How can I do this in
my community?
“Design situations that allow
equitable solutions to emerge…”
—Scott Boylston

Help peo...
predict



adapt
Ask better questions by using the 5W’s and an H.
(And active listening!)
what    What events or actions are happening?



 who    Who is involved? Who helps or gets in the way?



 why    Why is ...
Know your bias when considering
someone else’s needs—and your own.
thousands of sticky notes
Researching other people requires us
to apply more rigor to our life decisions.
Questions are also tools that help us
focus where to ideate—and break
rigid patterns of thought.
People are seeking healthier
food and drink in metropolitan
and rural areas.                               WHY?

         ...
People are seeking healthier
food and drink in metropolitan
and rural areas.                               WHY?

         ...
People are seeking healthier
food and drink in metropolitan
and rural areas.                               WHY?

         ...
ARTICULATE HOW BY GENERATING IDEATION QUESTIONS

How might we        How might we        How might we         How might we...
Be more effective in how you
use your time to come up with ideas
by using timeboxing.
ACT                      EVALUATE                   ARTICULATE




• what to do              • did you do it?             ...
ACT                        EVALUATE                   ARTICULATE




create low-fi design ideas   • did you do it?         ...
ACT                       EVALUATE                ARTICULATE




create low-fi design ideas   low-fi ideas worked,       • w...
ACT                       EVALUATE               ARTICULATE




create low-fi design ideas   low-fi ideas worked,       add ...
ARTICULATE          REFLECT   ACT




dd another 5 minutes
dd 5 more ideas
eally more unicorns
n more sticky notes
20 MINS      40 MINS     60 MINS      80 MINS     100 MINS    120 MINS




                                               ...
Don’t let people argue for ideas until
everyone shares their preference.
interactive storybooks about loneliness
Tell a story. Perform a drama. Sing a song.
Write it down. Draw your idea. Create a comic.
Make a collage. Tinker with dis...
Tear apart and reassemble your stories
so you can say more with less.
Questions help you unpack how
to act on your best ideas.
why    Why is this problem happening?



 who    Who can help you fix it?



what    What skills or materials do you need t...
Want big change? Keep motivated
by visibly celebrating quick wins.
Team up by creating personal
connections through shared
goals and values.
forming

 norming

storming

performing
Help others identify and
share their superpowers.
Apply them in concert.
“Our life is an apprenticeship to the truth,
that around every circle another can be drawn…”
—Emerson
Design can solve society’s
biggest problems…
Design can solve society’s
biggest problems…
If we can help people unlock
their potential by learning
through design.
Design can solve society’s
biggest problems…
If we can help people unlock
their potential by learning
through design.
This...
Let’s share our tools with the world.
Download the Collective Action Toolkit:
                                    frogdesign.com/cat

                          ...
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
Design Is Hacking How We Learn
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Design Is Hacking How We Learn

The next big disruption in lifelong learning will be by design. We are innately trained and poised to have a global impact on how other people can survive and thrive, whether they are designers or not. In this talk from AIGA Seattle's Into the Woods 2012 conference, David Sherwin points out opportunities and shares tools he's gathered to encourage people to be better critical thinkers and problem solvers, using the activity areas of the Collective Action Toolkit as a frame (which at the time was still a work in progress).

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Design Is Hacking How We Learn

  1. Design is hacking how we learn David Sherwin, AIGA Into the Woods 2012 @changeorder photo 6291481572 by Beggs / CC Attribution 2.0 Generic License
  2. Time for a pop quiz!
  3. Question 1: Can design solve most of society’s biggest problems?* * Be sure to show your work.
  4. Design can solve society’s biggest problems…
  5. Design can solve society’s biggest problems… if we cultivate a love of learning through the design process.
  6. Design can solve society’s biggest problems… if we cultivate a love of learning through the design process. This is a talk about how we can do this better.
  7. Let’s start by talking about survival.
  8. CHALLENGE Understand the nature and value of connection, and the digital connection models of urban girls in Nairobi.
  9. APPROACH Empower girls in local girl groups through explorer training so they can collaboratively plan and co-design solutions for their needs.
  10. FOUR WEEKS explorer training week 1 1 22 33 4 learn skills tell stories imagine possibilities be heard
  11. FOUR WEEKS research objectives week 1 2 3 4 FOUNDATIONS FOCUS IDEATION PROTOTYPE girl kick-off connections co-design evaluation
  12. Week 1: Creating sparks to build friendships
  13. Week 2: Becoming explorers and storytellers
  14. Week 3: Exposing latent creativity and wisdom
  15. Week 4: Encouraging co-leadership and collective action
  16. Future focus: Growing and networking local girl groups
  17. LEARNINGS The process and the product had great value to the community. Girls honed practical skills by being exposed to the design process. Local education systems did not teach girls how to grow and apply these skills in a flexible manner to solve a wide range of critical problems.
  18. I'VE BEEN SO HAPPY SINCE STARTING THIS PROGRAM OF EXPLORING. I FEEL MORE CONFIDENT THAN THE TIME THAT I CAME— I WAS TOO SHY. NOW I'M MEETING OTHER GIRLS. I AM HAPPY. Girl Participant, 14
  19. LEARNINGS There are few substitutes for in-person communication when encouraging local community problem solving. Technology has great potential to expand education’s reach, but we have to start local and analog to achieve scale. Safe spaces—places where girls are “free to try, free to fail”—are critical for gaining core problem-solving skills.
  20. Practicing design is empowering. It helps people see the world in a different way— and consider how to change it for the better. This hacks how we learn.
  21. How we are often taught THEORY PRACTICE REFLECTION Thanks to Kristian Simsarian for sharing this model with me.
  22. How designers learn PRACTICE THEORY TACIT KNOWLEDGE REFLECTION take a peek at the 70/20/10 model Michael M. Lombardo and Robert W. Eichinger and/or Eric Schmidt and others
  23. “Designers have the ability and the training to harness the tacit knowledge of the unconscious mind, rather than being limited to working with explicit knowledge. This makes them good at synthesizing complex problems with large numbers of constraints; It also makes them bad at explaining or defining what they are doing or thinking. They will describe process and results because they are not consciously aware of their own rationale.” —Bill Moggridge, rest in peace
  24. How designers anyone PRACTICE can try THEORY new modes of learning TACIT KNOWLEDGE REFLECTION take a peek at the 70/20/10 model Michael M. Lombardo and Robert W. Eichinger and/or Eric Schmidt and others
  25. How can I do this in my community?
  26. How can I do this in my community? “Design situations that allow equitable solutions to emerge…” —Scott Boylston
  27. How can I do this in my community? “Design situations that allow equitable solutions to emerge…” —Scott Boylston Help people use our tools independent of the design process to improve their lives.
  28. predict adapt
  29. Ask better questions by using the 5W’s and an H. (And active listening!)
  30. what What events or actions are happening? who Who is involved? Who helps or gets in the way? why Why is this happening? Why do you feel this way? where Where does this happen? when When does it happen? how How does it happen? How does it affect you?
  31. Know your bias when considering someone else’s needs—and your own.
  32. thousands of sticky notes
  33. Researching other people requires us to apply more rigor to our life decisions.
  34. Questions are also tools that help us focus where to ideate—and break rigid patterns of thought.
  35. People are seeking healthier food and drink in metropolitan and rural areas. WHY? STRATEGY It’s expensive to constantly visit vending machines to refill WHAT’S STANDING IN it with fresh foods. OUR WAY? How might we best maintain the freshness of healthy food in a vending machine? HOW MIGHT WE?
  36. People are seeking healthier food and drink in metropolitan and rural areas. WHY? STRATEGY It’s expensive to constantly visit vending machines to refill WHAT’S STANDING IN it with fresh foods. OUR WAY? TACTICS How might we best maintain the freshness of healthy food in a vending machine? HOW MIGHT WE?
  37. People are seeking healthier food and drink in metropolitan and rural areas. WHY? STRATEGY It’s expensive to constantly visit vending machines to refill WHAT’S STANDING IN it with fresh foods. OUR WAY? TACTICS How might we best maintain the freshness of healthy food in a vending machine? HOW MIGHT WE? DESIGN
  38. ARTICULATE HOW BY GENERATING IDEATION QUESTIONS How might we How might we How might we How might we best maintain signal to users procure and create a vending the freshness of vending deliver fresh food machine that can of healthy food machines the for inclusion contain different in a vending freshness of food in vending sizes, shapes, machine? on display? machines in and types of a region? food? How might we How might we How might we How might we aid a vending help a machine most quickly help users see machine in quick- provide the receive payment what is available ly recognizing appropriate and disburse at a vending different types climate to products to machine when of fresh and different types vending machine they are not local food? of food? users? present?
  39. Be more effective in how you use your time to come up with ideas by using timeboxing.
  40. ACT EVALUATE ARTICULATE • what to do • did you do it? • what else needs to be done? • how long you’ll do it • need more time? • how much time will it take? • required output • get the right output? • was output is needed? • desired fidelity • was it the right fidelity? • what fidelity is required?
  41. ACT EVALUATE ARTICULATE create low-fi design ideas • did you do it? • what else needs to be done? do it for 10 minutes • need more time? • how much time will it take? at least 8 ideas • get the right output? • was output is needed? words + doodles • was it the right fidelity? • what fidelity is required? on Post-It Notes
  42. ACT EVALUATE ARTICULATE create low-fi design ideas low-fi ideas worked, • what else needs to be done? do it for 10 minutes especially the sketches • how much time will it take? at least 8 ideas with corgi puppies— • was output is needed? words + doodles but more ideas with • what fidelity is required? on sticky notes unicorns would help
  43. ACT EVALUATE ARTICULATE create low-fi design ideas low-fi ideas worked, add another 5 minutes do it for 10 minutes especially the sketches add 5 more ideas at least 8 ideas with corgi puppies— ideally more unicorns words + doodles but more ideas with on more sticky notes on sticky notes unicorns would help
  44. ARTICULATE REFLECT ACT dd another 5 minutes dd 5 more ideas eally more unicorns n more sticky notes
  45. 20 MINS 40 MINS 60 MINS 80 MINS 100 MINS 120 MINS FINAL CLEAN SKETCHES VISUAL REFINED DESIGN EVALUATE WIREFRAMES THINKING DETERMINE ROUGH APP EVALUATE WIREFRAMES CONTENT BRAINSTORM BIG IDEAS EVALUATE
  46. Don’t let people argue for ideas until everyone shares their preference.
  47. interactive storybooks about loneliness
  48. Tell a story. Perform a drama. Sing a song. Write it down. Draw your idea. Create a comic. Make a collage. Tinker with discourses.
  49. Tear apart and reassemble your stories so you can say more with less.
  50. Questions help you unpack how to act on your best ideas.
  51. why Why is this problem happening? who Who can help you fix it? what What skills or materials do you need to solve it? where Where can you go for assistance? when When can you get started? how How might we work together to change it?
  52. Want big change? Keep motivated by visibly celebrating quick wins.
  53. Team up by creating personal connections through shared goals and values.
  54. forming norming storming performing
  55. Help others identify and share their superpowers. Apply them in concert.
  56. “Our life is an apprenticeship to the truth, that around every circle another can be drawn…” —Emerson
  57. Design can solve society’s biggest problems…
  58. Design can solve society’s biggest problems… If we can help people unlock their potential by learning through design.
  59. Design can solve society’s biggest problems… If we can help people unlock their potential by learning through design. This is good for everyone: families, clients, communities, yourself.
  60. Let’s share our tools with the world.
  61. Download the Collective Action Toolkit: frogdesign.com/cat Say hello: david.sherwin@frogdesign.com davidsherwin.com @changeorder © 2013 frog. All rights reserved.
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The next big disruption in lifelong learning will be by design. We are innately trained and poised to have a global impact on how other people can survive and thrive, whether they are designers or not. In this talk from AIGA Seattle's Into the Woods 2012 conference, David Sherwin points out opportunities and shares tools he's gathered to encourage people to be better critical thinkers and problem solvers, using the activity areas of the Collective Action Toolkit as a frame (which at the time was still a work in progress).

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