In the past few years, design has taken a step into the limelight as a methodology and solution to some of the world’s most pressing problems. Specifically in education, there are good ideas out there – but what seems to be consistently lacking are relevant, and well executed solutions that can work on a systemic scale in public education.
In Los Angeles, No Right Brain Left Behind and Green Dot Public Schools have partnered up to create a system design to transform underused spaces and school libraries into 21st century learning environments. The system, or blue print, as we sometimes call it, involves spatial rejuvenation; curriculum co-development with STEM and literacy partners, teachers and students; curated programming; and strategies for community activation.
Over the course of the past year, the Locke Library Project has engaged over 50 design professionals – many of whom donated their time pro-bono, in the research, spatial design, programming, and community engagement phases. For efficiency and agility, we started lean, and formed a small but dedicated teacher group at Locke High, called the Beta Group. This group of trailblazers worked with our design teams to identify existing pain points and are currently co-creating solutions that are smart and cost effective for the space and programming design. The Beta Group of teachers will be the first to use the space with their students. The Locke High innovation space will be a hub that inspires new kinds of learning, thinking, and being, while building on the success Locke High and its students have experienced during Green Dot’s management.
Green Dot’s curriculum specialists are working hand in hand with 3rd party content developers to co-create curriculums aligned with the new Common Core and Next generation Science Standards. For example, we are currently co-creating a common core aligned STEM motor sports and physics curriculum with IndyCar race driver JR Hildebrand and his engineering team.
Spatially, we are dreaming up a new low-cost furniture system. Based on a well-designed modular core steel structure, this system will be configurable into desks, seating, bookshelves, tabletops and eventually lighting solutions that can be assembled quickly with ease. Ideally we’d like people to build on top of this framework, make it better, and relevant to their spaces and environments.
Our collaborative commitment is simple – to build the best possible human experiences to teach, learn, and develop in – for the schools, teachers, and students that need them the most. Effective design and innovation integration is at the core of that.
To learn more about the work of Green Dot Public Schools and No Right Brain Left Behind, please join a panel of experts on Tuesday, March 4 at 3 p.m. at the Austin Convention Center Ballroom G. We’re also hosting an informal Creativity Meet Up on Tuesday, March 4th from 5:30 to 7:30 at the Hilton Austin Downtown in Room 410. If you’re not attending SXSW EDU next week, you can follow the conversation @AdobeEdu.