My process began around 15th March (one month before the event) when I gave some thought to how the process might be structured. I had the idea of 'imagineering' for some time, I liked the word and the emphasis on imagining. I followed the basic model that Chrissi had established for #creativeHE of a short post at the start of each day which was intended to stimulate imagination and personal inquiry.
I looked around for some resources that might provide the catalyst for thinking and then constructed an overarching question around each resource. I tried to imagine how someone might respond to make sure that the resource and the questions opened possibilities - which they did. I prepared some notes which were intended to make my design explicit for myself and then discussed the overall shape with my WCIW project team (Jenny, Roger, Nikos and Rafaela) in a google hangout on March 20th. The team thought the overall structure and guidance notes were fine.
Simultaneously I invited Chrissi Neratntzi and Paul Kleiman to critique my design. They provided some helpful advice which I incorporated and then did some more thinking on the design. I decided to start the event on the Sunday reasoning that most people might have a little more time to spend on familiarising themselves with the platform and the process. Then I added a warm up activity for the Saturday reasoning that people are more likely to get involved on the Sunday if the site is already active. I picked up the idea for the warm up exercise from a facebook post made in the Our Creative Life group.. I also refined the questions and the notes for facilitators. In the few days before the event I did a lot of gardening and I was conscious that quite a few ideas came to me while pottering - good ideas definitely emerged from turning ideas over while gardening.
I thought about the facilitation team and invited several more people, some who had facilitated #creativeHE before and others who might bring additional dimensions to the process including Patrick a cartoonist who I hoped would help visualise ideas and Graham a musician who I hoped might create a song. My design included notes for facilitators to share my own thoughts on the resources we were using and to help them prepare. I also wanted to explain that their role was not just to assist (guide on the side) but it was also to lead and provoke (meddler in the middle).
I also prepared some posters and accompanying notes to advertise the social learning event. I always find it helpful to reduce something to an essential message - 'this is what its about' and then this feeds back into the design.
There is no doubt that designing was a progressive process. In fact its progressive from the moment you start thinking about it until the moment that particular part of the design is implemented. The main effort was in the few hours I first sat down 4 weeks before #creativeHE was due to happen to create the overall framework. This was the point at which most creative effort was expended in deciding a process, the content to support the process and the inquiries that would be facilitated through interacting with the content. But there followed 3 or 4 weeks of gaining feedback tweaking the design and refining the details, with the odd additional idea being added. I'm sure that once it is implemented I will get feedback to tell me how well it achieves what I had hoped and get ideas for doing it better next time.
My design embraced the virtual space of the #creativeHE platform and the physical spaces which participants inhabited. I sort to create spaces for thinking for personal exploration and inquiry, a space for social interaction through which sharing ideas, resources, experiences and practices could be shared and relationships formed. I drew on my past experiences of #creativeHE and knowledge derived from these experiences knowing that new knowledge would emerge in the present which would extend over about 7days. Within this timeline I create a process around daily inquiry themes. I selected resources that I hoped would stimulate the imaginations and involvement of participants. Relationships are critical in my design I drew on past relationships from previous #creativeHE events and was grateful for the willing involvement of the facilitators. I was also grateful for the involvement of our world creativity and innovation week project team as facilitators and quite late on I tried to add some additional creative capacity in the form of an artist/illustrator to help visualise the ideas.
The affordances for learning and creativity are in the way participants (including me) perceived this ecology and interacted with it. Perceptions, motivations - willingness to be involved and to share and interact, and reflection on what emerges are all important to an enjoyable and successful outcome.
Ultimately, whatever emerges from this process will feed into my thinking and actions in the future.
THE TANGIBLE OUTCOMES FROM THIS DESIGN CAN BE VIEWED AT