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Innovation in STEM lessons: New Design Thinking advanced training workshop

Increasingly used in the classroom, Design Thinking encourages students to work together to find creative and innovative solutions to complex problems. Our advanced training workshop teaches the most important basics.
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Design Thinking promotes crucial future competencies in the classroom. Our blended learning advanced training workshop familiarizes STEM teachers with the approach and accompanies their own classroom projects. The next round starts on June 1, 2023, and registration is open until May 25.

What is it about? - Design Thinking as an innovative teaching and learning approach for the future

Digitalization, climate change, economic instabilities and political conflicts are just some of the many challenges we face today. This calls for new approaches in education. In addition to imparting knowledge, the promotion of competencies, attitudes and values is of great importance today. Design Thinking provides an approach for contemporary teaching here and is a creative method for making complex problems tangible and developing suitable solutions in several steps.      

“In a time of radical transformation, a Design Thinking mindset is increasingly relevant: Collaboration, innovation, creativity, empathy – these future competencies can be learned and should come to the fore in contemporary education. So that we can jointly and proactively shape a sustainable and humane future,” explains Christine Niewöhner, Senior Project Manager for Design Thinking in STEM at Siemens Stiftung.

Blended learning provides ideas for use in STEM lessons.

For the German educational context, Siemens Stiftung is cooperating with the HPI School of Design Thinking in Potsdam, Europe’s first innovation school of its kind. Since fall 2022, modular training seminars for Design Thinking in STEM lessons are being offered in a blended learning format, combining virtual sessions with on-site collaborative work. The focus is on the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), which serve as a concrete impetus for the group work.      

Participants in the free advanced training workshops learn about the teaching and learning method in a mix of face-to-face and online sessions over a two-month period. In a three-day face-to-face event, they test the use of the approach and work together to develop approaches to SDG 3 (health and well-being) and SDG 13 (climate protection measures). During the entire time, coaches accompany the self-study as well as first assignments in class (e.g. biology, chemistry, mathematics, physics or computer science).  

Teacher training in Heilbronn in June/July 2023

After advanced training seminars in Berlin, Neumarkt and Munich, the next round will follow with presence in Heilbronn. The four modules: 

  •  1.06.2023: Kick-off event (virtual)
  • 15.-17.06.2023: Seminar|training|advanced training seminar (in presence, Heilbronn).  
  • Digital deepening and mentoring with our coaches  
  • 25.07.2023: Closing event (virtual)

Impressions of previous seminar|training|advanced training seminars

Change of perspective: Together, the participating teachers develop visions for future-oriented STEM lessons.
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Designing the future: After an introduction to design thinking methods and ways of working, participants try out the approach and develop concrete solutions based on the UN Sustainable Development Goals. 
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Idea generation: Anything that helps to take the user*s perspective and awaken creativity is allowed. 
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Prototyping: The design thinking method is used to create tangible solutions that are reflected upon and improved in iterative processes.
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Collaboration: sharing how Design Thinking approaches can be integrated into STEM lessons and foster creative collaboration is an important part of the advanced training workshops.
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Voices of participants

Marco Hartmann, high school teacher from Bavaria

“With this innovative approach, I can activate and motivate students to their full potential. But I found the flexible approach of the coaching team and their good knowledge of the possibilities and requirements in everyday school life especially cool.” 

Nina Platt, high school teacher from North Rhine-Westphalia

“In my professional everyday life, I notice that what we are currently doing in school is very far away from what our students need. I hope that with these new impulses, I can prepare the students more for the future.”

Eva Kahle, high school teacher from Bavaria

“Design Thinking helps a lot to get out of one’s comfort zone and to develop further – whether in interdisciplinary teamwork, co-creation or empathy. I definitely broadened my horizons and got valuable tools to promote more open ways of thinking in my teaching as well.”

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