Design Challenge

Challenge: Create a solution (i.e. build a prototype) to solve an actual problem you or your team have. The problem you'd like to address might be one from work or home life. See below for examples of solutions from previous workshops.

NOTE: If you'd rather build something whimsical then you are hereby granted permission to do so.

Work Group: You decide if you want to work solo or in a group. The group can be any size but everyone must be engaged in the build.

Time Allotment: 60 minutes. Countdown Timer is HERE.

Building / Prototyping Supplies: The facilitator will point out the supplies available to you.

Do not waste supplies!

Required Sketch of Your Idea: Before you start building you must sketch your idea out on paper and discuss it with your team. You are more likely to have success when you invest wisely in the planning phase.

"Give me six hours to chop down a tree and I will spend the first four sharpening the axe."

~ Abraham Lincoln

Demo or Die: At the end of 60 minutes you and/or your team will deliver a demonstration of your working prototype to the entire group. During the demonstration everyone else in the workshop will move to your "area" so as to get a better view of your prototype and presentation.

==> Presentation Directions for "Demo or Die" are HERE.

"Demo or Die" will look something like this:

Sample Projects built by previous workshop participants:

Interactive book - Designed and built by two middle school technology teachers. While flipping through the book you can touch certain points on the page to hear a sound that enhances the story.

Interactive clock designed by three elementary school teachers to help young students learn how to tell time in increments of 5 minutes. For example, when you push on the "1" you'll hear "5 minutes after". When you push on the "2" you'll hear "10 minutes after".

Constellation teaching tool - Built by one person who works as a museum educator. Use the stylus to touch "stars" on the piece of paper to learn if they are part of a particular constellation. If that star is part of a constellation then the recording will identify the constellation.

Below is the back of the constellation teacher.

Each constellation hole on the front of the prototype relates to

a particular piece of aluminum foil on the back.

Special Populations Communication Aid - Designed and built by one person who works as a museum educator. This workshop participant works at the Orlando Science Museum where once a week the museum invites children in the community with special needs to visit. This tool is designed to help children who are nonverbal communicate their needs with greater ease.

Photo Booth Requiring Teamwork - Designed and built by one person for a school fundraising event. Each person holds the conductive aluminum tape on the sides of picture frame and then they hold hands which activates the Mac Book's photo taking app. This workshop participant was planning to decorate the picture frame with school colors and other branding.

Tree Cross Section Teaching Tool - Designed and built by one person who works as a museum educator. This teaching tool shows the cross section of a tree and when you touch various areas on the cardboard you'll hear various types of audio recordings including questions, science facts, areas of further inquiry, and more.

Whack-a-Mole (Banana) Game - Designed and built by two high school teachers. One person focused on writing all the code (in Scratch) while the other person built the actual device.

Running Race Game - Designed and built by three teachers. One teacher focused on writing the code for the game (using Scratch) and the other two focused on building the game playing devices. This game required two players who competed with each other. As they ran on the game pads the "Sprite" (small figure in Scratch) floated to the top of the screen. The person who ran the fastest for the longest period of time caused their Sprite to float to the top faster (and win).

Learning About Honey Bees - A father converts his son's K-3 coloring sheet (a school project) into an interactive multimedia learning experience.

Learn to hold a pencil properly - Designed and built by three teaches in Lansing MI. One of the teachers works with Pre-K and Kindergarten students and she needed a device that would help students learn to hold a pencil properly. The teachers found a short piece of PVC pipe and then added conductive tape in such a way that you're able to play notes on a digital piano when the pipe (used in place of a pencil) is held correctly. If you hold the pipe incorrectly then fewer notes are played. Programming not required for this project.