Young designers of the future
20 Nov 2014
How do the blind tidy up their table, or make a cup of tea? How much energy does an elderly person use when climbing a flight of stairs?
These thought-provoking questions were posed to Ping Yi Secondary School students during their Design Education (DE) lessons. To make lessons more interesting, the teachers of Ping Yi Secondary School designed learning experiences that were experiential and meaningful, so that students could draw insights and new perspectives.
Students were encouraged to first identify daily obstacles faced by different communities, and apply their creativity to think of innovative solutions, through the aid of simulation exercises.
For example, some students were asked to perform various tasks while blindfolded, while others donned weights, wore fogged glasses and breathed through straws to simulate the physical constraints of the elderly.
Through observation, discussion and analysis, students learnt to empathise with others and worked together on ideas for possible solutions. They also learnt basic computer design programmes, to communicate and visualise their ideas.
As part of the “DE-Character and Citizenship Education” project, students also used their observation and creative thinking skills to contribute to the school community. For example, some of the damaged desks were restored and the wooden tables in the common areas of the school were given a new coat of protective paint. Students also installed reflective tabs on the stairs in dim areas to minimise trips and falls.
“I always look forward to DE lessons. We get to try out different things. There are a lot of activities and my teachers are very supportive when I try to come up with new ideas during lessons,” said Megan Lim, a Secondary One student.
To find out more about Ping Yi Secondary School, visit their website.