I was very excited to learn of the Design Thinking for Educators resource developed by the infamous IDEO and Riverdale Country School. The toolkit is dense with information, strategies, and supports – all designed to help educators develop and leverage “design thinking” to solve challenges. Here is how they define “design thinking”:
Design Thinking is a mindset. Design Thinking is the confidence that everyone can be part of creating a more desirable future, and a process to take action when faced with a difficult challenge.
So, it is a “state of mind” as well as a “process” which, as they say, “… gives you faith in your creative abilities…” I really like the emphasis on trying something new and iterating. The idea that “… it is always in progress.” There is something very empowering about giving folks (particularly educators) the permission to try something and fail… and try again. That’s a great lesson for our students to see, too. The toolkit presents a lot of information – don’t get overwhelmed – it is designed in such a way that you can pull bits and pieces and use immediately. However, what it does require is time – the most precious thing these days.