Build your kid's design thinking skills while they dress you today
5-9 year olds
Maybe wait until it's a holiday: your child will be your personal stylist for the day.
You'll be asking them to plan out your outfits and shoes for the day.
But they have to do it like a designer -- with empathy, brainstorming, and experimentation -- to get you in the best outfit!
Now we want to work in constraints: Set a timer for 10 minutes.
Tell your child: now it's time to be an interviewer. They are responsible for interviewing you about what you need and want around your clothes.
For example, what is the best dress if you are going to work? Or for hiking? Or for gardening? More questions: what kind of clothes make you happy? Which are the most comfortable or the least comfortable? Do any clothes have memories that are attached to them?
Help them ask questions if they struggle. Tell them a good question is always Why?
Provide your child with plenty of options: make it visible and accessible for them to make a new match for you.
It's likely your child will have their own likes and dislikes for your outfit -- but re-emphasize what you talked about in the interview. What is the purpose of the clothes? And what will make you, the user, the happiest?
Try (within reason) to go with their choices for you -- they are in charge as the designer.
Now that you have an outfit planned, and put on -- then it's time to talk it through. You should talk through together: is this outfit really a good match? What could go wrong? What could be better?
You can also pull in some other people as testers. Does this outfit look good? What could be improved?
If you get any critiques, time for iteration! Ask your child to figure out a way to deal with the criticisms -- with a new combination of clothes, or swapping something in.
Now it's your day to wear the design thinking creation!
PhD in Education
Originally from Turkey, then Pittsburgh, now California
I got my PhD in educating kids how to code, and how to think computationally so they can thrive in STEM. I have been researching how Offline Activities -- where kids aren't in front of a screen, but are playing in the real world -- can help kids get core concepts of coding.
This fun activity teaches your child to brainstorm potential solutions and develop a deep understanding of the empathy. It will also allows him/her to prototype and test with you so that you child can retain design thinking process.