Designing with Children

Forgot to mention that last week, we presented a paper which used literary and cinematic extracts to illustrate the kinds of interactions children and designers have, when they are involved together in design processes.

We drew on our interviews with spatial designers as well as from our recent two case studies in Germany and Sussex. The presentation grew in our minds some months ago, as a number of books and films had served as reminders, illustrators and theory builders for us to reflect upon how particular themes continually rise to the fore for us. These themes are: co-creative process; keeping possibliities open; the competence of children (including improvisation as a kind of competence); the honest, open and direct communication of children and of adults and children acting together. To summarise, we raised the interesting question of the extent to which adults and children may be friends and equals in some elements of design, and indeed in wider life.

We used short extracts from the books: Tove Jansson's 'The Summer Book'; David Walliams: 'Gangsta Granny' and Nick Hornby's 'About a Boy'. And we took brief clips from films: Tarsem Singh's 'The Fall'; Luc Besson's 'Leon'; Henry Hathaway's 'True Grit; Adam Elliott's 'Mary and Max'; Charlie Chaplin's 'The Kid' and just a teeny piece illustrating the difficulty of choosing(and the wonders of keeping possiblities open!) from Jaco Van Dormael's 'Mr Nobody'. We wanted all visuals for the presentation to appear here, but our CMS is not very happy with Powerpoint; we'll try to get a link or another format up here soon. In the meantime we hope you enjoyed just one clip from The Kid, illustrating competence and collaboration in a beautiful way.

Posted 8th July 2014 12:11 by Jo Birch

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