Saturday, January 25th, the students had a full-day workshop with an organization called KIDmob. KIDmob is run out of San Francisco by architectural designers Tyler Pew and Kate Ganim, and they work with students on critical and creative thinking using design as the process. They worked on a few different projects – creating a social meeting space, reconfiguring the boutique, creating new sandal designs and new sandal displays.
The students worked in groups to first come up with their own ideas for these, and develop the design process based on what they themselves were interested in and the methods they personally wanted to use. Next, they approached a new projects with a “client” based approach. As Tyler and Kate explained it, this was to design a project based on what “clients” needed – creating models and designs, and using the materials and resources on hand to actually build their ideas. Country Director Sarah and Managers Deke and Annie served as the “clients” with a specific set of requirements for each project, and the students worked together to either solve the problem or design the new idea.
They worked through critical thinking, problem solving and solution implementation to create the final project. They were helped by team leaders and facilitators Willio, Frankie, and Johnson, who led the groups by asking questions in response to the students’ questions – what do you think is the best material to use? – How do you think we can attach these two pieces? – Why do you feel stuck with this idea? It created a very open and encouraging environment to face challenges and think collaboratively to overcome them.
The students had a blast and you could clearly see a growth in leadership, organization skills and collaborative thinking. It was a change in their normal Saturday programs, and not only did the students enjoy the hands-on approach, they learned about themselves and their own capacity for innovation. We are lucky to have a group of smart and creative young adults, and this workshop was a perfect fit. Thank you to Tyler and Kate and the rest of the KidMob crew! Check out KidMob’s website and blog to learn more about the amazing work in several US schools, and now in Haiti. http://kidmob.org/news/?month=january-2014
For more information about KidMob visit their website www.kidmob.org