Recent Posts by Alan Perkins

Exemplar Projects Published Reminder on the OCC

HLProject - Criteria E I am sure you have all used the IB's new exemplar projects for Design Technology by now - but if not this is simply a reminder that they now have 4 Standard Level projects and 6 Higher Level projects to review, download in PDF etc. These are pretty useful, for looking at assessment and as guides/exemplars for students not knowing what to aim for. They are also particularly useful for the final two criteria which are still ...

3 Magical Designs – that demonstrate WHY you want to be a designer after the IB DP!

Hi all, Sometimes as students it is easy to get wrapped up in the mundanity of completing the IB Diploma, and attempting to gain the highest score possible in your Design Technology course. I have to get a 7, I must get a 7 and so on... However of all courses that you have chosen as an option I believe the Design Technology course, very much has higher aspirations as we want to inspire you to go on past the IBDP into ...

Video Resources – Are we defined by the objects we create?

Simply some great video resources linked below that can be used to inspire students and teachers either by viewing clips in the classroom, or alternatively doing as flipped classroom tasks and questions outside of the classroom : - A great video looking at why designers are so inspired to create and innovative with new products - with some great quotes regarding why they do what they do - "To Ive, it's an illness." "To others, it's desire." https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=09OeQayBGCY A fabulous Youtube channel for ...

Two stories of innovation – the Bread Clip and the Fidget Spinner

Often stories re innovation only focus on those that have succeeded and even if we have heard the Dyson story a thousand times I believe it is useful to flag with students some of the reasons that the lone innovator/inventor does not succeed. Often this is simply due to bad luck, lack of resources or simply that they give up! A recent story is that of the ubiquitous fidget spinner that has invaded classrooms this year. The inventor Catherine Hettinger tried ...

Revision Resources – Quizlet Yourself to a 7

Hi all, Summer has come and DP1 Design Technology students you may be in a situation where you end of year DT examinations did not go quite as well as expected. So what to do - noting that there is less than half a year of study left until those final exams and the first term next year is going to be busy! So why not use some of your downtime over summer to practice. You probably have all used Quizlet, but ...

Sustainable Design – Plastics, the Oceans and a Unit/Projects we must ALL continuously do?

As teachers of Design Technology I feel it is incumbent upon up to ensure that the basics of what a good designer must focus on are imprinted on our students minds. I have always been a strong advocate of the IB ensuring that the Design Technology course focuses on sustainable design and as each year passes this focus should and must be strengthened not in simply the teaching of one unit, but in all that we teach in our Design ...

Constructive Discontent, Dyson and G-Shock Watches

Another year is almost over and it would be remiss of me not to post a final Dyson focused article of the year as yet again he can be an excellent inspiration to all IB DT Diploma students. However to begin with I came across another inspiring designer who like Dyson had for many years produced 100's of prototypes before he came across a design that given time would become a design classic:- "I threw more than 200 prototypes out of ...

Major Project Blues – How About Some Furniture Design?

Hi students, are you struggling with thinking of some ideas for your Major Project. Well - if you have read my posts before as a Design Technology teacher I am a fan of Product Design and Furniture design. So see below for some great links and inspiring ideas that could get your creative design juices flowing :- Could you design a better laser cut - Foldable table that could be carried easily around and yet be structurally stable for two ...

Instagram – Time to Follow Some Great Designers for Inspiration.

Social media is not just great for following your friends, your favourite media stars or simply your favourite cat videos? It can also be great for following designers - and yes as Design Technology IB students following some interesting and innovative designers should be of interest to you. So for a great start to 20 innovative and interesting product designers sharing their thoughts and ideas on Instagram go to this post and follow as many of them as you like! ...

Socially Aware and Environmental Design Spotlight

When the new year of teaching starts - I always find it is good to do a design spotlight with students to get their brains thinking about the world of design again after a great winter break. Normally I pick one of my favourite areas of design either socially aware or environmental design ideas - often loosely based around the syllabus but hopefully gets them thinking about what design can lead to - and the infinite possibilities it presents. Here ...