Our Stories

Sixth Graders Apply Design Thinking to Help the National Building Museum

October 14, 2015 by Dalia H (’16) (Students)

The sixth grade class of JPDS-NC had a wonderful experience visiting the National Building Museum. The purpose of our visit was to come up with ideas and designs for using the west lawn. When we observed the space, we noticed a large patch of grass and a pathway in a semi-circle. Then we met in groups to think about possibilities. Should we make it a sculpture garden? Add a fountain? Add benches and do activities there?

My group’s plan involved offering options for team building activities, education, and reflection. We even designed a fountain that needs people to collaborate to make water come out so that people could learn about themselves and their peers by using this space together. We added benches so people could talk and signs that said no smoking and littering so the space would stay pretty and clean. We also wanted a greenhouse where we could sell flowers and plants.

To make our models, we used lots of different materials. There was a lot of cooperation because we all took on different tasks, helped each other, and supported each other’s ideas. When we were done, each group shared its prototype and explained how their design would meet certain needs. The staff was impressed with our designs and said the Museum might use them one day. I felt proud that we were able to come up with great ideas, and I hope that one day they will use parts each of our prototypes for the west lawn.