Visualising Ideas – my journey of discovery

I've been 'OK' at drawing and an avid doodler for my whole life. I vividly recall as a child devouring blank paper, pencils, protractors, pens, set squares, compasses (the circle-drawing kind) and soft lead pencils... A lifelong love of stationery! I loved creating patterns and designs. My father worked for a government office and for [...]

Building Community Capacity for Transformational Change

A conference speaker asked the audience, ‘Who thinks the world is changing at a rate so fast it’s hard to keep up?’ Of course, many hands went up. To which he responded, “You know, it’s never going to be this slow again!”. Too often, in my experience, the so-called 'change management' process associated with a [...]

Design the Learning Ecosystem: Don’t forget ‘How’ after #StartWithWhy

Design. design /dɪˈzʌɪn/ (vb) decide upon the look and functioning of a building, garment, object, system or experience Innovative.innovative /ˈɪnəvətɪv/ (adj) new ideas; original and creative in thinking Innovative design is changing the the way we navigate our world, reimagining future opportunities, solving annoyingly small or significantly huge problems, or just plain helping people. Design thinking is applicable beyond [...]

What’s all this talk about ‘small data’?

Is big data your only focus for improvement? “90% of the data you collect will never be actionable or even helpful" (Jake Peterson, founder of Dirty Analytics D-Zone)Attention is turning to ‘small data’. If you’ve heard Pasi Sahlberg recently or read his book FinnishEd (2018), you'll know about small data.Small data finds the humanity, and focuses on [...]

How might we co-design the learning ecosystem?

Perhaps the construction is close to completion for the new learning space. I'm sure you are keen to embrace diverse pedagogical approaches, develop collaborative teaching teams and create learning strategies to empower self-directed learners. That bright-shiny new space may have been designed to support future-focused, inquiry-based and learner-centred pedagogies, however, over time it can just [...]

Future of Learning (is design): Creating the ‘need-to-know’

How might we design meaningful engagement and authentic learning experiences? In every educational jurisdiction there are curriculum guidelines that frame the content to teach, outcomes to achieve and standards to reach. But what comes first, the content or the learner?  This question is at the heart of engaging the disconnected learner, the content of the [...]

Future of Learning: Empowering small ‘d’ designers

Why design matters “I believe it’s one of the most positive tools at our disposal to improve our quality of life”. Alice Rawsthorn, TED2016     The principles of design can be translated into everyday situations to make the world a better place. In her book, Design is an Attitude, Rawsthorn writes, “Whenever human beings [...]

Future of learning (is design): Empathy mapping to target engagement

Learning design is a process of rethinking the experience of school that supports a zero-based strategy, rather than tinkering with the edges of the status quo. It is a shift from teacher-directed ‘delivery’ of curriculum, to learner-centred approaches. If we are genuinely seeking to engage the disengaged, then we need to focus in empathy – [...]

Future of Learning (is design): Let’s talk about ‘the lecture’

When was the last time you, as an adult learner, placed yourself in an unfamiliar, yet necessary learning context? Learning something that made your brain hurt? I like to use the expression in my workshops ‘create the need-to-know’, asking educators about whether the content has purposeful application to a context that matters to the learner. [...]