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How did you at first get involved with designing for children/students?

As a leader for kids, as a kid age 13, if not even earlier – in the garage playing teacher and trainer. Professional at 13 for training for kids in gymnastics.

How do you involve children in a design process? 
I involve in different ways. In floor excercise they make their own dances. I also teach them the “right way” to dance more instrumental muscel memorywise. They bring that into their own dances later.
Mostly I will ask. Ask ask ask ask! :-) Make them thing and feel and also instruct and ask again depending on what they are about to learn.

 

Before starting on a project, how do you plan the process?

From final result and backwards. when I have had theatre plays and improvisation they do their own storyboards, some get into regisör role other play and follow. In some cases the result will be stearing in others the process and creativity process is the result.

 

*When working with the users, how does it influence the process?

You can not work with users without having them influencing – as they are doing the job. I bring in their whole person, but they also must understand that they are a team.

 

What is your optimal result when designing?

Co-operation with timed beatiful moves, in education is motivation and expanded thoughts about what they are learning.

Happyness and ownership and new more developed thoughts from the once I work with would be the optimal result.

 

How do you plan the process to comply the aim

It depends. In learning processes it is important to have an individual approach – to start where each individual is and develop from there. In gymnastics you must build up the development in steps. The gymnast must not always understand the whole process – but the body must learn. If you move too fast you usually have to move them back again as you did not start where they are. I must know more then they, but the always supprize me so I can not decide but must look at each where they are TODAY, and that always change – but is also moving forward along a development stair.

 

Do you try to create a sense of ownership for the users? If Yes: How? If No: Why not?

Yes: To make them understand. Also to make them improve their self awarness.
No: When they do not have to know – eg why I build up a excersice to make them jump higher. I just make them and I “talk” to their bodies more then the brains. Repetation and then redesign – it is like construct and deconstruct and then contruct again.

 

If you ever feel like you get stuck during a project, or in a process, where do you turn?

(colleagues, inspiration from the internet, interenet communeties, friends, experts etc)

To the once I train. I tell them I feel struck and they help me. Also to more skilled trainers, to books, internet, gurus, to my self, but mostly to the once I train. If they have well developed self awarness it is a good method – if not – I have to use myself and professionals more. Very seldom I feel stuck.

 

If you have worked with children/students and/or teachers how did they take part in the process?

Yes. In designing, in finding out who and how they do things as a NOW and also how they WILL do in the FUTURE. The goal or vision. I also use student, gymnasts to teach eachother, to observe, feel and feedback themself and eachother. Sometimes when the aim is to have fun – I ask them what they want to do. Specially kids of today HATE to be instructed. They want to be involved. Sometimes i have to tell them – if they just must learn – that this is boring, but as you get it you will enjoy it. The more skillful they are the more involved do they get into the process. It has nothing to do with age.

 

“We have found that, just as Sir Ken Robins argues in his famous talks about the education paradigm, kids are being taught out of creativity.”

Totally agree. They want to be fed, but hate it at the same time. The schoolsystem here in Sweden is walking in the wrong direction. To stear is okey if you also allow freedom of creativity. But only with testing measurble knowledge – “idiot-facts” they do develop a thought that there is a right answer and become unsure about themself. The once that in Sweden are the great pedagogs are the “fritidspersonal” the once that take care of the kids after ordinary schooltime. Even subjects like sport are becoming intellectual with text, paper etc. The once who are skilled in that have no chance to develop their muscels only. The handicraft people in Sweden will be a lack because of that, or is already.

 

 So when you work with people who you feel have unlearned their imagination, how do you go about re-opening that side of them?

I make them secure and tell them that they must do “mistakes”. If you never fail you never develop. Encurage them to be brave.

 

When working with projects that concerns a big part of the community, how do you get them involved?

Large group interventions. If working on society level you must develop different ways of processes on different levels. The overall level will always be in need of making sure things are in right direction. That means that they follow up on an operationell level, they make complex things measurble. BUT that does not mean that the real process should be instrumental. You as a pedagog or research person must know how to translate from one level to another. Skills are possible to measure but you must break them down to real excercises and real learning. You do not become a professional surgeon eg in a hospital by reading a book. But you must follow up with pen and paper how they are doing.
Politicians sometimes mix that up. Also lazy teachers and designers who want to do as they are told. They forget to translate from overall aims to the concrete level where they must involve to become successful. They obey and miscredit the socitety level – if you understand what I mean.

 

Please tell us about one (or more) methods of your personal favorites, when it comes to opening up the process and creating new ideas?

Open space
Improvisation
Vision
Observation 
looking at Now and compare with what is Wanted to be
Forbid critisism in an early stage
Listen
Benchmark – comparing with others from other fields – cross funtional, cross topic, global, cross culture, now – to history, 
Look at the best once – what do they do – what ideas can I come up with to reach the same success
Reflection - 
Listen to what is NOT said, the gap between
Think just the other way round – “If this is true – what if the opposite was true…
Quantity in ideas – the first one might not be the best – come up with more and more ideas 
For own development – self managed learning SML

Please tell us about a good experience while working in collaboration with users. 
What does that mean to you? FUN it is very important to play and have fun
To respect eachothers role and situations and fears
A place where you as a person have room to be
Good collaboration is when you also are effective and have a feeling of a performance. 
Where you can change you view and mind. 
A good co-lab is easy if you have same experience – like in gymnastics we just go in and have a lot of knowledge how this should work – does not matter if you are young or old. 
Time – you need time at least sometime
The roles are in place or communicated around
Good leadership – and what that is is a long story
Honesty – but you do not have to tell your whole lifestory – but just what is needed for the situation
A good resource analysis – what are you good at and what am I good at?

Look at learning in the internet world. I will be going to Dreamhack tomorrow – worlds greatest LAN-meeting where 12000 young people meet and game. It is like a flocking behavior where tjey become eachothers helpdesk in life. Game industry is innovative – but could be even more innovative when looking at gender neutral things. 

Blended learning is fine – programmed learning is good when it is needed – but you need to add the person and engagement to it but make it when needed. Like the good old Kirkegaard – start where they are. But to not mix that up with a blurry picture of what should be learned and how. A pedagog/teacher must know that. And have a few coping strategies for different types of students. 
Strait from my head. 

Good luck! 

Kristina

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