I have been working with my grade three class all year on developing a Growth Mindset, taking more challenges and control in their learning. Our most recent design challenge was to design a playground given a specific place or user. First we considered what elements were necessary when designing a playground, money, space, safety, etc. Once we had a list, the students worked individually to come up with an initial rough plan. They shared their ideas in “Speed Dating” format and went back to iterate their designs. Next, they worked in groups to come up with a design, shared again and then I shuffled the groups. This process of diverging and converging planning led to a plethora of ideas and no one student being attached to one single idea.
Through this planning, the students were more willing to share thoughts and take more risks. They demonstrated the Risk Taking Mindset, Iteration Mindset and Empathy Mindset. At this point I assigned them their specific task (type of users for their playground or place) adding in the Human Centred Mindset. They tried out many different designs, tested them and either adapted or completely changed them, if they didn’t work out, easily and without fear of failure. My students absolutely loved this project and process, and their final projects were amazing and they were so proud and excited to share!