Stanford Visit

On October 15, 2013 our Design39Campus team had the great fortune to tour the Stanford d.School and take a peak inside the design thinking spaces of the school. Having spent the morning at IDEO, we were ready to explore the halls of this famed school. 

From the outside the d.School is hard to spot as it looks like most of the buildings at Stanford. Inside, however, you know you are in a different kind of learning environment. Multicolored stickies, whiteboard panels on wheels and hanging from the ceiling, foam sugar cube seats, and roll-up garage doors for walls are all standard fixtures of this learning space. 

Upstairs you will find the lab spaces where students work through the design process in collaboration with a variety of people. 

Of interest to our team was the K-12 work group who is finding ways to bring design thinking into the classroom. Reading their walls excited us to see how the mission/vision of Design39Campus fits with the work the d.School is doing. We left business cards and tweeted to them about our visit in hopes we can make a deeper connection with this very busy group of thinkers.

The Makery rooms proved to be a treasure trove of ideas for our own Makeries back home. Our take-aways from this visit are:

1) learning spaces must be flexible
2) furniture must moveable and multi-use
3) designing is about making and sometimes it just has to be messy
4) we need "stuff" readily available to facilitate learning 
5) space, tools, and materials must be applied to real problems/projects to make learning real
6) traditional one teacher, one classroom organization is a barrier to innovation
7) teacher teams need to be composed of a variety of experts who help all members learn new skills in the application of the teaching practice.

Thank you d.School!