Show the students the video about teenagers and obesity. It explains some of the problems associated with child obesity and offers some solutions. This video will be used as inspiration for generating different ideas for a digital solution to childhood obesity.Teen Obesity - Behind the News
Have a discussion with students about the main issues discussed in the video.
Child obesity is a huge problem and we are going to ideate how to find a digital solution to the problem. Ideation is a part of the design thinking process which helps us to open our minds to many different solutions in order to find the solution which will work best.
The aim of this lesson is to understand how the design process works and to generate different ideas for solving the problem of child obesity. We will use design thinking activities and compare which one was most effective in generating different ideas.
Explain to students that design thinking is a process or approach to how we can think about the problems we are trying to solve. It is a common process in the game and app making industry and is used to solve a variety of problems. A large part of design thinking is developing strategies for understanding the needs of the user and generating innovative solutions.
The first part of design thinking is to empathise with the users and define what it is you are trying to solve. Then we generate as many ideas as possible. The more ideas you have, the more opportunity you have to find the idea that will suit your design brief. This is the time when you share your craziest and weirdest ideas, as well as your clear and sensible ones, and get all of your ideas on the page without discounting anything. After you brainstorm all of your ideas you analyse and refine these and narrow them down to find the feasible ideas to start to design. Although design thinking has an order, this is not a linear process. At times you will move between prototyping and back to ideation or empathising. It is a fluid process that develops as your design does.
Explain to students they are going to participate in some different design thinking activities to help them generate ideas. By creating many different ideas, it will allow them to decide which one suits the design brief best. Remind them that they are considering the design brief.
Introduce students to the activity 50 ideas in ten minutes (The number of ideas and time can be changed to suit the group). The idea of this activity is to come up with as many ideas as possible (at least 50) and to ensure you don’t get sidetracked there is a time limit. In order for everyone to get the most ideas down the group will need to ensure they don’t judge each other’s ideas, encourage wild and crazy ideas and use “and” instead of “but” to build on the ideas.
An alternative to this is to begin by writing down ideas individually before forming groups and sharing their ideas. Or students write down their ideas on paper and, after a few minutes, they pass on their own piece of paper to another participant who’ll then elaborate on the first person’s ideas and so forth.
Students complete the activity and share some of their ideas with the whole group.
The next activity is the Attributes Method. Explain to students that they are going to collect different attributes of the games or apps and use these to consider the type of app or game they can make. Attributes are the different features a game or app has. As a group make a list of the different attributes you could have. E.g.
Use these headings to create a chart. Give students approximately 15 minutes to complete a list of ideas they can use for each attribute. They may like to consider some of the ideas they did in the brainstorm but there will also be an opportunity to add more ideas under each heading.
Story of happens when you eat the wrong food.
Making decisions about what to eat.
Help the character get to the end.
Cook a meal.
Attribute listing is a tool for generating options. It allows you to generate possibilities by first identifying the main attributes (characteristics or qualities) and then exploring new, interesting, or unusual variations of those attributes. When students have a list of attributes they can choose one from each section to create an idea. E.g. Bob in the school yard in a points game where he makes decisions about what to eat. A pirate in a castle gets more and more sick when he eats the wrong foods in a maze. A flamingo needs to cook a meal in an underwater setting.
Give students an opportunity to share the game or app they chose. They should be encouraged to share how they participated in the different activities as well as reflect on which activity they found most useful to ideate.
When sharing, encourage other students to ask questions about the ideas presented. This presentation is an opportunity to unpack their idea further and begin to list the considerations that may be needed in making the app or game.
At this point you may choose to extend the ideation and create a prototype.
Ask students to reflect on their role in their groups and how they contributed to the team throughout ideation. They should answer questions about how many ideas they had and why they chose the idea they did. They may use the following guide to complete their idea and draw what their solution might look like.