well, you probably knew that I’d chime in… 😀

I agree with you that these are tools for different purposes. When we are looking for a thing that serves a human need, such as in industrial design, then empathy is the way to begin. For industrial designers the designers must have a clear understanding of their client and must empathize with the problem presented so that they can have the information (or gather the information) that they need to accommodate that or find a solution to that problem.

For example- my kid watches her iPad on her lap all the time we need a case that is sturdy, can you help us? In order to solve that problem, they have to watch the kid with the iPad, she where she goes what she does and EMPATHIZe with the kid to get at what SHE wants rather than what the designer might have in mind or think she wants. We have to empathize to get to new solutions that we might not have come to on our own, in our studio thinking about the problem. And then this is created as a result of that exact Industrial design process. http://www.speckproducts.com/apple/ipad-cases/ipad-mini-3-cases/iguy-ipad-mini-3-cases/IPM-IG.html

Thing is, the client COMES to the industrial designer WITH a problem or a question and that they are looking for solutions. The industrial designer doesn’t always have to come up with the problem. Their job is to solve the problem, typically.

The Industrial Design process works when you are looking to change something to make the human experience better, and more aesthetically pleasing. I can see that sometimes, in school we might be looking to do that work, especially connected to science & math inquiry.

I suppose this can happen organically for a designer as they think about something and tinker and examine something to make the human experience better, as well. In which case, making fits in really well with this too. But my greater interest as you can imagine is how this connect with GID! 😀

The other tool you mentioned is our Guided Inquiry Design. Thanks for seeing it as a major tool in your shed. GID is a process used to support academic inquiry, research and responding. You’re right, it’s is all about having students ask an interesting question about the content of the curriculum. And then digging in deeper to an area of interest in a way to get deeper into the content. This you already know. So , these are two separate processes, for very different things.

Could they interweave? Yes, I think so.

The Wonder Expo is a great example of a time when these could weave together in ways that kids could benefit from both processes. So we begin with an Open that gets skids thinking about how science can help humans (7th Neighbourhood theme on next year’s wonder expo) Then they Immerse in the possibilities of that idea. They Explore to expand their understanding and think about what might be realistic in the time that they have. Next students Identify an area of interest, a question or hypothesis.

Moving into GATHER is where these processes merge and support two things, academic deeper knowledge of a content area as well as creation of a new thing that solves a specific problem. SO students Gather information from human resources as well as written material. In Gather students are moving into the first phase of the Industrial Design process of Empathy where they gather information from people about the problem, current use of something or existing state from a human’s perspective- but they are also gathering information from books, website and other resources to understand a variety of perspectives about the problem. Technicalities, scientific fact about the way things work, mathematical connections… and so on.

Through Empathy, they define the problems and begin to understand some possible solutions to it. Create is where they IDEATE and generate ideas and solutions, using scenarios and their information from Gather. They begin to create something new. Then they have to see if it would work- so prototype and test. All come in GID Create phase. Once they have the eureka moment, they are ready to share, and evaluate. Though those phases could come in to support the revision process of the Create.

It’s fun to think about how these processes work together on their own and with other “tools in your shed” Thanks for letting me think along. Now, I’m wondering what the meld of problem based learning would fit into this scenario!

Also on one more side note, GID was created through research that started with empathy for the users of information in school- trying to find a better way to interact with students when they came to the library to do research… how cool is that??? so GID was created using a form of research aligned to industrial design that DEFINITELY had to do with empathy and bettering the human experience of research.

Don’t cha just love me… haha!