A Sample Teacher/Student(s) Dialog: The following is a sample dialog between the teacher & the students for this lesson.
(Arrange ahead of time an area in the Makerspace containing plastic cups, plastic spoons, and binder clips — make sure to have at least 3 plastic cups, 3 binder clips, and 1 plastic spoon per student team)
(Note: T stands for teacher, and S stands for student, with additional advice in parenthesis).
Show video to the class: Making New Things Out of Old Plastic
T: (open class discussion): What did this video show you about recycling and the Empathy phase of Design thinking?
S: (answers vary; e.g., recycling and repurposing helps me to solve a problem … )
T: Look at all the recycled materials given to you and the Makerspace area you have to work in! This is your awesome area for creating ! What should you think about when working in this space?
S: (answers vary; e.g., how to store stuff, clean up, organize materials, make things easy to get to, etc.)
T: What might be the benefits for moving from the storage space to another location?
S: Sometimes you might need to transport many different materials to another location all at once so you can work on them!
T: Any ideas about how could you do this?
S: (answers vary; e.g., make carriers to transport materials easily…., moveable carts, etc.)
T: How could a tote (“container”) help you to hold the things you need?
S: (answers vary; e.g., easy to move about, could contain multiple sections with different materials to use at once, etc.)
T: The Define phase of the design thinking process takes all you learned from the Empathy phase to define a user need that your design will address. Today your team will address the need to make a tote out of recycled plastic cups, binder clips, and plastic spoons to help Makerspace users carry materials from one place to another. You have the following criteria: you can only use these materials, and your tote must be able to hold at least 3 different types of supplies in separate sections. (ask students to sit with teams, then pass out copies of RAFT 3 Cup Maker Tote and/or provide these materials and ask student teams to create totes with them. Allow 20 minutes for students to experiment with ways to connect the cups)
(after time is called, discuss the following with all teams)
T: What attributes should you consider for a tote?
S: (answers vary; e.g., strong, easy to transport, hold many things at once, etc.)
T: How did you create simple but useful containers with multiple compartments out of commonplace salvaged plastic cups, spoons, and binder clips that could hold project materials in a Makerspace?
(Pass out to each student: Lesson 2 Maker Journal Page: Tote All Possibilities! )
T: We have been thinking about solving the problem of carrying many supplies from one place to another in sturdy containers made from recycled supplies! By teams, walk over to the Makerspace and check out all the recycled materials you have at hand. Record in your Maker Journal other items that might be useful for containers, handles, and connectors!
(allow student teams time to investigate and record attributes in their journals. After time, discuss the following points together –> )
- What else could you use for containers? (think of things that hold other things)
- What could you use for handles? (investigate ways to carry containers)
- What else could you use for fasteners? (investigate ways to connect holders, containers, etc.)
- How strong does a tote need to be? (investigate durability)
- How easy will it be to organize and access different types of items in the tote compartments? (investigate compartments & easy access to materials they contain)
- Will your tote hold all the items you need? (investigate holding multiple sets of objects at once)
T: How will you store the tote after it is used? (investigate places you might store them; on a wall, on a cart, take apart, etc., and ease of storage). Anything else you should consider?
S: (answers vary)
T: What can you tell me about the Define Phase of the design thinking process?
S: (answers vary — quick review of the Define phase)