Design Thinking Solutions: Flowcharts for Managing Student Workflow

flowchartOne of the most challenging aspects of managing a Design Thinking project: you will have students who are on schedule and you will have students who are behind. Sometimes, they will have missed a deadline due to time management, and sometimes, a student will need special help to get on track. This means that in a single classroom, you have 2-4 different instruction sets to give.

Multiply the instructions: visual learners, auditory learners, those who follow better when you present, and those who follow better when they can read and reread instructions.

Q: How is one teacher to manage so many steps, so many types of students?

A: Flowchart.

Sure, you could open Google-draw, create a hundred boxes, and wrestle with filling them with content and arranging them in a clear way.

Or you could use MindMeister, which has an intuitive interface, rich features, and even builds in a presentation mode.

Start class with a walk-through for two minutes. Post the link on the class calendar or with the URL shortened and written on the board. When students get lost and raise their hands (or devolve into non-productive behavior) remind them to consult the flowchart.

To look at a live and working Mindmeister, designed to help students through the prototype phase of their project, click here.

It seems to me that while my students may benefit from my pre-designed idea map, the next step is teaching them to create a map for this project and others.

And the step after that? Adopting a visual, special, info-graphic approach to all instruction.

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