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Teachers Learn from Design Thinking Specialists

Sept. 20, 2019

Lindbergh middle school teachers recently spent the day in Design Jam, learning hands-on with national design thinking experts Eric Chagala and Kaleb Rashad. Chagala is founding principal of the Vista Innovation and Design Academy (VIDA), and Rashad is director of creative leadership at the High Tech High Graduate School of Education, and director at High Tech High.

This work will transfer directly into classroom instruction at both schools, in addition to targeted design thinking work. For example, Sperreng recently launched Design Time, a menu of special interest courses ranging from underwater robotics to service learning, to catapult design. During Design Time, students can choose a course that interests them, and collaborate to solve a problem.

At Truman Middle School, the library has been expanded to include a Design Lab, where teachers can provide their students with opportunities to create and problem solve outside of a traditional classroom setting.

Truman Principal Dr. Mike Straatmann and Sperreng Principal Dr. Lauren Boeger first met the energetic duo last year during a visit to San Diego with a team of teacher leaders. During Design Jam, teachers learned more about Design Thinking and how it connects to their specific content areas and academic applications. In the afternoon, they attended sessions called "Project Based Learning Remix" and "Leading for Creativity."