We’re Making Progress!!!

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Today felt like a really productive day. I had band to start the morning, which is always fun since I barely get to play with a band now. Then because of the way the schedule is purposely set up, we have ID time for half of the day basically. During this time, the Disney Cohort successfully self-organized our plan for that day and the upcoming week.

Everyone had 15 minutes to come up with what they think their personal plans are for the upcoming week, then we all met and everyone gave the 30 second version of their thoughts. It was really nice to finally here what everyone was working on and we were able to form some good partnerships between people with similar interest. Based on what people were working on, we decided that next Tuesday we will stay at school during our long time together, but next Thursday we will meet at Rome which is a studio space that we got a membership at!

Personally I made some great connections today with other ID members. To connect how I want to encourage more high schoolers to love writing, working with dance, and doing more with the flute, Kaylyn and I have decided to co-create a musical. She specifically has a love of writing and is really talented, so she will head more of the writing, while I will work more with the music and production stuff. To evolve more people in the process, our task for tomorrow is coming up with a blog, or some other place for other people to contribute ideas, and maybe even sections of writing. In the end the hope is for this musical to really be a combination of writing done by lots of different people, and hopefully it can be writing students, teachers, and mentors are all excited about and want to help work on.

I also teamed up with Abigail and Megan to really tackle this roof idea. I have been really bugged about the waisted open space on the roof, Megan had already started looking into a company in Chicago that helps places with roof top gardens, and Abigail has been interested in how students and teachers use their classroom space. Together we hope to create a space that is really designed for students so that they can have their own place to work or just hang out; we don’t really have a “student coffee house area” right now, but we believe there is a need for a student space. We have already done some interviews with students about current classroom space, and we hope to also use some ideas we have had about classroom space and use the roof as a prototype place for that.

On top of all of this that we worked out, we also listened to Jasmine Burton, a senior at Georgia Tech with a major in design for social impact, talk about a product she helped create called the Safichoo. The Safichoo is essentially a bathroom for 3rd world countries that was designed to be be a house hold toliet, that separated waste, was above ground, and maintained culture norms. She talked about her process in creating this product, and overall it seems to be really successful, and you can tell because the “project” isn’t over yet! The truth is that I’ve heard a lot of the points she made about design thinking before, but her story was still amazing to hear, and it goes to show that while her process was a different DT process than  DEEP, at its core the process was still about designing for human needs by working directly with the users and constantly prototyping and redesigning to get the best solutions that can last for long periods of time.

I still had 2 classes today as well, but they felt so trivial after everything I had done in the morning. I’ve noticed a trend with design thinking at school; you get really pumped up and just want to keep going, but then classes get in the way and take away some of that energy. Don’t get me wrong, I like most all of my classes pretty well, but nothing compares to ID time and the thrill of designing and the freedom of working on what you’re interested in.

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