We’re learning from failures and mistakes - During the course of a 5th grade homework
prototype we learned that the prototype required more clarity and communication in order to
catalyze successful student engagement at home.
We’re learning how prototypes interact with and impact the status quo - The Intersessions
Prototype was designed to keep students engaged and learning during school breaks based on
research about learning loss. As courses in programming, project-based design thinking, and
making have become successful, their success has impacted our thinking. Should programming
be offered more widely? If so, how? How might project-based design thinking courses be used to
foster interdisciplinary learning?
Gaining insights about what catalyses or inhibits prototypes - The iterative nature of prototyping
makes it easier to notice the factors and practices that contribute to the success of a prototype
as well as the factors and practices that are detrimental to the success of a prototype. Knowing
what catalyses and inhibits practices like Project-based Learning for example result in important
insights that can be used to plan successful schoolwide implementation.
Discomfort of Prototyping
Lingering in the problem space isn’t the only uncomfortable aspect of prototyping. Prototyping is an
uncomfortable process for any organization. Worthwhile prototypes challenge assumptions and
constraints of established practice such as:
time constraints or schedule structures
space constraints and usage patterns
established roles of personnel
Establishing prototyping as the core competence for innovation, requires more than creating a research
and development department or team. It requires schoolwide value for innovation, understanding of
innovation processes, and that the bumps and disruptions are worthwhile discomforts in pursuit of
relevant student learning and success.