September 2: Messaging and learning

Today was just 8th grade, DT 2. These classes are fun and totally different personalities as groups. I started the class with the usual Design of the Day, but I prefaced it with a little information about the article I noted in the last entry and how it has me thinking about how we categorize things and label them good or bad. I like sharing my own learning and thought processes with students. There were some quizzical looks and some nodding of heads as I shared.

We went on to discuss this image

unless you puke, faint or die, keep going!

thru the lens of feelings, and purpose. It was a fascinating discussion that went much longer than the 10 minutes to which I try to limit our openers. Some students felt that it was motivational or at least with good intentions. Others spoke up and said it was pretty ridiculous and even intimidating. After several minutes of discussion, I revealed that the image is actually in a school building which led to a whole additional round of discussions about users, intended audiences and appropriateness.

I’m excited to have more of these types of conversations, and now I need to work on ways to get more students involved. I recently saw this idea for Turn and Learn instead of Turn and Talk, and I may add that soon.

The rest of the class was setting up design journals, adding links to the spreadsheet and then getting to work on sketches for their shelters. I went back this morning and added pronouns to the characters even though I knew it wouldn’t update for the students via Google Classroom. Just wanted it for future uses. We also decided as a class that shelters should not be bigger than a 30 cm cube. Trying to limit paper and hopefully increase success as it should be easier to build paper structures that are smaller.

I also did a spontaneous and quick introduction to orthographic sketching. I want to work on pushing students to create more quality work this year. Instead of just random quick sketches, I want them to produce useful sketches with measurements and at least close to scale. It was semi successful as students were creating some pretty cool drawings. Maybe I’ll add some of them later.

Now I’m just happy it is the weekend.

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