How do you use design thinking in the classroom

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Students have seen a dramatic shift in the world of education and learning. Students now need to have the ability to adapt to a multidisciplinary learning approach and be able to transition into the future of work. 

Design thinking skills help students comprehend what they are learning and allow them to question and go beyond their work.

These skills are highly important for employers around the world. Let’s look at design thinking and how you can apply it to school students effectively.

An Overview of Design Thinking

  • Design thinking is an approach that is human-centered to solving creative problems. It takes five steps to generate meaningful solutions to real-life problems.
  • It is a process of suggesting innovative solutions to problems and generating fresh ideas. The design thinking cycle generates new products and services or improves the efficiency of business operations.
  • Imagine a class where students suggest solutions to problems or create products. You could create anything from a mobile app that helps you understand foreign languages to a model that can teleport you anywhere in the world. Sounds crazy, right? Design thinking removes all barriers and allows you to explore unexplored areas in order to unleash imagination and creativity.
  • There are infinite solutions and ideas, and this is what a design thinking mindset allows students to do.

Design Thinking is important for school students

You may be asking yourself why design thinking training is important.

This question can be easily answered by having a look at the undergoing changes and anticipating direction work in the near future will take. You will need to be flexible and skilled in order to succeed and thrive. You must be able to adapt to situations that you haven’t seen before. Design thinking, therefore, should be a key part of your life.

Design Thinking: Steps of the Inquiry cycle

For any problem you face, design thinking can help. Students and teachers can use a few steps to overcome their problems.

Step 1 – Empathize

This step requires you to ask lots of questions, and this step is very similar to the observation stage of the scientific method. Ask deep questions instead of asking simple questions. No matter what topic you are tackling, it is important to look at it from every perspective. 

It includes examining your beliefs, actions, and thinking. What is the source of your beliefs and thinking? Instead of focusing on the symptoms, try to identify the root cause.

How should teachers use it? What’s a recent issue that’s been common in your classroom? You might have a student who reacts to a conflict between students, which allows you to look at the problem from many angles. 

This step allows you to see the problem from a different perspective and can help you make new decisions. This stage can give you new insight that could help you move in a different direction.

Now, let’s know how students use design thinking. This tool is great for helping students solve problems in class or explore a specific topic. It is a remarkable way for students to learn how to do research, and it will be a valuable skill that they will need in their future educational and professional careers. Students can collaborate and ask questions and then discuss the topic. This method is well-suited for science and social studies. Students can use this to adapt to any problem.

Step 2 – Define

What is the real problem? What’s the ultimate-best way to solve the problem or achieve success? This step is similar to the scientific method’s hypothesis, and this step is about determining the “need.”

Mostly, teachers use it. If a student faces trouble concentrating in class, you might suggest that the student should be taught how to deal with stressful situations [1]. If you have a problem with a group of students, then students might need social skills and problem-solving skills.

It can be used by students as well. How? Students should pay attention to the problems when they are studying the topic. Students can also write a statement, which will keep them on track.

Step 3 – Create an Idea

It is the best time to dream, imagine, talk with peers, and brainstorm. Imagine what it would look like if the problems were solved.

Teachers focus on the end goal. What would happen to your classroom if disruptive students were more focused on the task? How would it look? Can you picture the student using coping strategies or finding a spot in the classroom to work through their emotions without upsetting others? What you envision here will help you find the solution.

What students do with it: Students are better at this than adults, and they are naturally creative.

Students can find innovative solutions. However, some of their “solutions’ might not be feasible. That’s ok! This is the time for creativity and to get people thinking.

Step 4 – The prototype

What’s your role in this, steps should you take, and can you ‘create’? Now is the time to narrow your options to those that work and find the specific needs.

Teachers can list the solutions they could offer to the problem. What solutions can you find with the resources available? What solutions could you possibly get more resources for? You need someone to help you find the answer. It is a great time to collect resources and create an action plan.

Step 5 – Take a Test

It’s worth it! It works! But there’s always room for improvement [2]. What needs to be changed? The process is not always linear. You can return to the test phase over and over again, and it is worth trying. Give it a try and wait to see if you find the solution. If it doesn’t, go back to the previous phases to develop new ideas.

Conclusion

Teachers and students will get excited when they come across the idea of applying design thinking to classrooms. Through this blog, you might already have perfect design thinking implementation ideas in classrooms and your every life. Besides that, share your classroom’s happenings after implementing design thinking in the comment section!