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 ...

Selectivity and Distillation: the Process Portfolio is NOT a Diary

Diaries. Journals. Sketchbooks. They serve a range of purposes; diaries document the momentous and the mundane, the day-to-day detritus, and the sporadic moments of joy and/or despair. Artists’ diaries can give a good insight into the creative processes. (See the illustrations included here.) Tate website “A diary is a record of events or experiences. From sketchbooks to video diaries; and from the mundane and everyday to big life events and how these make us feel… We have pulled together a selection of art to ...

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 ...

Some resources for BM teachers

Finding suitable resources to introduce the context or theories and concepts to students in an engaging way is often challenging. So, I decided to try and help with this task by suggesting suitable resources with brief outline to IB BM teachers. Definitely there are variety of resources out there and this list can be just a starter list for exploring more Case studies have been the main tools for teaching business theories and concepts and several websites offer good case studies ...

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 ...

Your responsibilities as a creator of theatre

The other day I went to the theatre to see the culminating performances of theatre students that had been studying devising and theatre creation at my local University. I was excited to see what they would come up with. Having spent many years working with High School students on devising processes I was intrigued to see how University level students were different in terms of choices of themes, influences, techniques, styles and use of space and production techniques. To be honest, ...

140 Characters in the IB Classroom

"Twitter" flickr photo by Uncalno https://flickr.com/photos/uncalno/8537569665 shared under a Creative Commons (BY) license The word "Twitter" (as in a certain social media platform) has been turning up more and more in the news recently.  Twitter itself isn't new (if you're interested, you can read the history of Twitter in this post on lifewire), and it isn't new in education.  But as it is being talked about right now, I thought it might be a good time to take a closer ...

Practical application of the ideal gas equation

How many moles of air are in your lab? What mass is this air? These are a couple of great questions you can set your students and ask them to come up with some answers using the ideal gas equation. You will need a barometer (to determine the air pressure), a thermometer (to determine the temperature of the lab) and a rule to calculate the volume of the lab and hopefully some imaginative students. I carried out this work with my class a while ...

Summer Investigations (2) Works on the PLT: The Thief and the Dogs

As we try to balance shorter and longer works in our hopes that students will fully read and engage with the texts in the syllabus, I think we are all inclined to look for works that work;  for works that are reasonably riveting for all of our students and that expand our sense of the complex world we live in, that foster some growth in both understanding and reading skills. People often find that Crime and Punishment, a work of considerable ...

Descartes’ wax experiment and the project of pure enquiry

Descartes’ rejection of scholastic philosophy is the first step in his systematic questioning and radical re-examining of the foundations of knowledge. The medieval interpretation of the physical world entailed an absolute and unquestionable belief in ‘substantive forms’ or inherent essences, manifesting themselves in phenomena such as fire, regarded as ‘consubstantial’, that is, being intrinsically associated, with the presence of fire. In his ‘Meditations’, Descartes sets out to question the origins of our beliefs in order to make us reevaluate them in ...