Teacher talk: design thinking and social action

July 31 2017. Hayden Shaw discusses how secondary teachers can deploy design thinking and social action across the curriculum.

Curriculum resources written by a secondary teacher give students a pathway to investigate the state of cycling in their community and take action.

The Year 9-10 resource and the NCEA Level 1 assessment resource were written by Hayden Shaw, a senior leader at Rolleston College. Hayden’s teaching background is in physical education and curriculum innovation, including the use of design thinking.

Here’s more on aspects of Hayden’s learning design.

Design thinking

From Hayden Shaw’s junior curriculum resource:

“Students use design thinking to create a game, physical activity or social action that will help to positively influence the number of people cycling in the future.

Design thinking enables students to follow a process in which they gain empathy for the problem/issue they are trying to solve. It encourages innovative thinking before they take action. Design thinking also helps students turn their ideas into reality. Some incredible learning can take place when students are making something happen.”

Watch Hayden discuss design thinking in the video above.

Find out more: Hayden's SlideShare presentation on design thinking teachers.

Social Action

Hayden suggests that teachers support students to take action in society on an issue they care about. When this happens through school, students

  • Have an authentic learning experience connected to the real world around them
  • Can make a change in their world
  • Learn that they already have a voice in the world they live in.

Here’s an example of how Hayden did this through cycling and game design:

Cross-curricular PE and technology case study (Year 9)

Health and PE curriculum resources

Junior secondary resource:

Where have all the bikes gone? Aligns to NZ Curriculum Levels 4-5 achievement objectives.

Senior resource:

Taking action to get more people riding bikes Set at NCEA Level 1. It includes a resource to support assessment for Achievement Standard 90969: Take purposeful action to assist others to participate in physical activity.