From 2016-2019 I worked with Transcend Education to build creative capacity to transform schools and create a new future for education. I joined their Collaborative Team focused on designing learning experiences for a cohort of district and charter schools, creating a framework and space to explore and design innovative school models.

We focused on human-centered design, creating tools and activities to enhance the adult learning process, and I helped to build and guide inspiration tours as innovative multi-sensory educational experiences. Our goal was to make learning meaningful and joyful for adults and to model a culture of innovation for those who are transforming their schools.

I have co-created several tools for the teams including Future Trend Cards (pictured), Learning Science Cards, and Culture of Innovation Cards. All three tools offer an analytical lens during the school design process. To teach about methodology, I also created interview and observation modules for human-centered design training. And to inspire the educators, I co-designed inspiration visits in San Francisco, Austin, and New York with special inspiration kits to enhance and extend the experiences.

This project has inspired me to ask new questions about the potential for adult learning. I often look to Maria Montessori’s human centered and research based approach to designing a new form of education. By observing children, she created a durable education model, including the design of elements like values, spaces, and tools (the math beads and case she designed are pictured here). From this work, I have started thinking about how to create new inspiring educational experiences for adults that help them connect to their senses, their curiosity, and new ways of knowing.