DesignWeek @School

From October 31st until November 4th the first DesignWeek@School will be held at elementary school De Koningslinde in Vught with the goal to acquaint all 250 kids with 21st century skills. Design Thinking Center partners with DesignWeek@school and supports the week by welcoming the kids in the Design Thinking Center Amsterdam on November 3rd.

At the Koningslinde, all children from class 1 to 8 will learn the basic principles of Programming as well as Computational and Design Thinking. Especially for this week, a simplified Design Thinking model for younger children has been developed. In four different ‘labs; all the children will be challenged at their own level:

  1. MiniLab for the younger kids, where they will learn how computers think with various ‘unplugged’ activities
  2. RobotLab facilitates the principles of computational thinking, where the kids program their own robots Bee Bots, Blue Bots and Sphero
  3. CodeLab is all about online programming assignments, using Scratch and the children will build their own computer games
  4. DesignLab focuses on the older children, where a social issue will be solved by using Design Thinking.

21st century skills

Children nowadays are growing up in a rapidly changing world. The world is getting smaller, and through all media, lots of information is available to them. Occupations are changing. They have to deal with robotics and rapidly developing automation. But how do we prepare children for the future if we do not know how it will look like? Besides reading and math, skills like collaboration, communication, ICT and media literacy, entrepreneurship, critical thinking, creative thinking, problem solving become more and more important. Creative thinking is stimulated at schools, which is at the core for all other skills. That is why the DesignWeek@school fits in perfectly. It goes beyond learning how to deal with ICT; it is all about using ICT possibilities for programming and design thinking.

Design Thinking & kids

In his famous TED talk Sir Ken Robinson asks the question: do schools kill creativity? With the conclusion that children ‘unlearn’ the creativity while in school. In this sense Design Thinking Center proudly offers its space to De Koningslinde. “We literally offer the kids the space to reconnect with their creative skills and facilitate them in Design Thinking” says Christof Zürn, Chief Design Officer of Design Thinking Center. With the Design Thinking Method – a human centered approach to problem solving – we start with ‘a beginners mind’, are open to new possibilities and connect the thinking with the doing. So at the end of the day everyone should have a common understanding of the problem, some original ideas and a first prototype of the solution.

Design Thinking Center

The Design Thinking Center in Amsterdam is a unique combination of an innovation lab and an experience center. It is designed for innovation, change and flexibility. Nearly all the walls can be moved and opened to create new rooms and reveal new possibilities of co-creation in small or bigger groups. The highly experienced trainers and facilitators will lead you through the design thinking process with clear steps, smart and creative tools.