Explore

Part of these packages: Explore and create

Supported by these technologies: Blogger,

Student teams explore the context of their design either by observing relevant practices or environments using digital cameras, notebooks and microphones, or by searching existing works that relate to their design brief by collecting examples similar to that which they are intending to design. The object of observation depends on who they are designing for, what they are designing and the initial challenges they want to address. They share their collected media files on their blogs and record a reflection. You guide their search and support them in the qualification of their material. Note that viewing and qualifying video material can be time consuming. Spending time viewing videos that contain inaccurate information, can be a detour from which a pedagogically meaningful conversation may arise, and may provide students with a first-hand experience about the appearance of an invalid source. Some students, for example younger ones, may need more guidance in performing this activity. Classroom time: Approximately 1-2 lesson(s)

1. Prepare / Listen

  • Listen carefully to the student comments, and shape the activity according to their needs and interests.
  • Expand your competence and expertise, by identifying online resources, locations and events where observation can be carried out, or people that could be interviewed for each team. See: ‘Design Inspiration for School

2. Inspire

  • Describe the activity to the students and inspire them by showing online resources that they could browse through.
  • Ensure that all teams know what kind of examples they are looking for, what to observe and where.
  • Describe the activity to the students and inspire them by showing locations where observations can be carried out.
  • Check that each team is equipped with cameras, notebooks, microphones etc.

3. Coach / Question / Support

  • Teams plan how much time they want to spend searching, evaluating and comparing. Coach them by remind them about time management.
  • Teams search for comparable designs and discuss them. They select the 10 examples that are most relevant to their project. Support them with resources and relevant examples in case they get stuck.
  • Students perform observations in teams or individually. Coach and support them to find meaningful observations.
  • The learning activities culminate towards a design. Some students may be overwhelmed by the multitude and quality of benchmarked examples and find it difficult to proceed productively. Remind them that many examples they see are made by companies with large budgets.
  • Slow Internet connection? Try to schedule the use of the Internet for each team to avoid Internet traffic congestion. See if some teams could perform their activity beyond school,  using the Internet connection of their homes, after school clubs, or public libraries.
  • Teams view and annotate their collected media files.
  • Teams record a reflection. This reflection can be used for sharing their ideas with other teams.
  • Beyond school: Teams post their findings to their blogs, including drawings of design ideas. Teams may identify more relevant information, for example by visiting a library or by browsing the Internet.
  • Teachers found that this activity presents an opportunity for reflecting about the pros and cons of using ICT tools in school. Why not try the same with your students? Ask your students to critically assess the activity and their value to school learning. Then, the students record a reflection.

4. Assess

  • Review the work of each team, their reflection recordings and blog entries, then record audiovisual feedback for them. Your feedback might include suggestions and questions.
  • You could assess the breadth of identified examples and the teams’ ability to identify examples that are related to their design briefs.

Support material

To learn about the possibilities to reuse online material, view and provide sources for learning about copyright and creative common licensing.

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3 Responses to Explore

  1. Cecilie Aurvoll says:


    After this they started working in groups with their chosen subject, and were told to document their work using Wallwisher. Example of Wallwisher: http://wallwisher.com/wall/IdaogIdaM

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  2. Cecilie Aurvoll says:

    Our pre-pilot teacher let the students explore the subject “the universe”. Together they watched a series of youTube videos about the subject, and he also let them find videos on their own. After this they started working in groups with their chosen subject, and were told to document their work using Wallwisher. Example of Wallwisher: http://wallwisher.com/wall/IdaogIdaM

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  3. Anna says:

    Thank you for your comment. 🙂

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