Teague's Tech Treks

Avoiding tech "OOPS-idents" by Helen Teague

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Weekend Ed. Quote~October 18

This week’s quote arrives from my friend Dr. John Barell, prolific author and creative thinker:

https://inquisitivetoafaultdotcom.files.wordpress.com/2014/08/milkywaythailand.jpgI would show my mother, Elizabeth Barell, a picture like this of Melotte 15, an emission nebula, and say, “Look, Ma, this is where stars are born–a stellar nursery.” She’d quickly respond, “How do you know?” I’d say, “Look, it says here `Astronomers say this is where stars are created.’”
And she would respond with such alacrity, “Well, how do they know?

I then used my very basic knowledge of astronomy to explain what I thought I understood. “How do they know? How do you know?” Two of the most important questions we should be asking about all sorts of things besides star formation. ~Dr. John Barell

 

Thank you, John!! I’ve learned so much from Dr. Barell’s many books, among them:

Why Are School Buses Always Yellow?: Teaching for Inquiry, PreK-5

Developing More Curious Minds

Problem-Based Learning: An Inquiry Approach

How Do We Know They’re Getting Better?: Assessment for 21st Century Minds, K-8

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Additional Ed. Quotes

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Reflections on Innovation

Reflections on Innovation by Helen Teague

There is tension with innovation. The tension is often between change and status quo, between goal and process orientation.  Innovation is a process-oriented trek (Brown, 2009, p. 134) that is non-linear and sometimes “messy” (p. 17). For those raised with production quotas, fixed goal orientation, and inflexible deadlines and due dates, the unpredictability of  innovation can be downright scary and threatening. Brown (2009)  and Dyer, et al (2011) offer ideas for nurturing change and innovation from idea to practice.

The Design thinking required to implement innovation proceeds from a systematic approach that is flexible, non-hierarchical, and “constantly evolving” (p. 187). Innovative companies exhibit an interrelationship between People, Process, and Philosophy (Dyer, et al, p. 170). Drilling a little deeper, there are five qualities that innovators share. One quality is a cognitive ability and the other four are observable behaviors. Specifically, the cognitive ability of Association and the behaviors of Questioning, Observing, Networking, and Experimenting make up the profile, the “DNA” of design innovators.

Teague rendering of principles in Innovators DNA

Brown is unique in his advocacy for empathy as a component of observation, which he describes as a mental habit that looks deeply into the lives that we borrow when we observe (2009, p. 49). Empathy fosters an advocate rather than adversary relationship with customers and colleagues (Brown, 2009, p. 54).

Brown cites Toyota’s Steven Spears’ that direct observation and experiments are essential by managers who serve as coaches rather than fixers (2009, p. 189). Dyer, et al offers three ways to experiment: “try out new experiences, take apart products, processes, and ideas, and test through pilots and prototypes” (2011, p. 138).

Prototyping is vital to this experimenting phase of design thinking. Brown describes the process of prototyping as “inspirational” (2009, p. 106). Acceptance of failure, trial-and-error, and many iterations are necessary for innovative design thinking. Dyer, el al make the distinction between two types of projects: breakthrough innovation and derivative innovation (2011, p. 230). Some projects are inventive and some are re-invented or re-engineered. All projects are comprised of three distinct phases each needing unique design thinkers: Entrepreneurial Discovery, Delivery organizers, and Execution experts (Dyer, et al, 2011, p.

There is tension in leading from innovation (Brown, 2009,  p. 138) and promoting the kind of “combinatorial play” advocated by Einstein (p. 41). Business schools matriculate “deliverers not discoverers” (2009, p. 37). Daniel Pink (2009) notes the “mismatch between what science knows and what business does” while trying to solve the challenges of 21st century life. The importance of this concept is also addressed by Brown who describes the 21st century’s “epochal shift in the balance of power as economics evolve from a focus on manufactured products to one that favors services and experiences” (2009, p. 199). That there is continuity among influential thinkers such as Brown, Dyer, Gregersen, Christensen, Pink, and many others attests to the dynamic importance of design thinking for schools, businesses, and communities.

 

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Brown, T., & Kātz, B. (2009). Change by design: How design thinking transforms organizations and inspires innovation. New York: Harper Business.

Dyer, J., Gregersen, H. B., & Christensen, C. M. (2011). The Innovator’s DNA: Mastering the five skills of disruptive innovators. Boston, Mass: Harvard Business Press.

Pink, D. (2009). The Puzzle of Motivation. Retrieved from http://www.ted.com/talks/dan_pink_on_motivation/transcript?language=en#t-1097899

 

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Innovation Reading List~Update

Here is an update to my previous post on worthy books addressing the subject of Innovation.These updates reflect the books choices of my fellow doctoral students.

All of these books have been added to my Innovation Book List on Amazon.

Amazon Innovation Book List

 

 

The Innovator’s DNA by Jeff Dyer, Hal Gregersen, Clayton M. Christensen (my book choice, see this link for posts)

The Lean Startup: How Today’s Entrepreneurs Use Continuous Innovation to Create Radically Successful Businesses by Eric Ries

Innovation Engine by Tina Seelig

ON Innovation by Terry Jones

Design, Make, Play: Next Generation of Science Innovators by Margaret Honey and David Kanter

The Innovative University: Changing the DNA of Higher Education from the Inside Out by Clay Christensen

Exceptional Creativity in Science and Technology: Individuals, Institutions, and Innovations by Andrew Robinson

Digital Storytelling: A creator’s guide to interactive entertainment by Carolyn Handler Miller

How to Create a Mind: The Secret of Human Thought Revealed by Ray Kurzweil

Creative Confidence: Unleashing the Creative Potential Within Us All by David & Tom Kelley

Disrupting Class by Clayton Christensen

Essentialism: The Disciplined Pursuit of Less by Greg McKeown

Now You See It: How the Brain Science of Attention will Transform the Way We Live, Work, and Learn by Cathy N. Davidson

Reinventing Writing: The 9 Tools That Are Changing Writing, Teaching, and Learning Forever by Vicki Davis

The Power of Social Innovation: How Civic Entrepreneurs Ignite Community Networks for Good by Stephen Goldsmith, Gigi Georges

The Leader’s Guide to Lateral Thinking Skills: Unlocking the Creativity and Innovation in You and Your Team by Paul Sloane

The Maker Movement Manifesto by Mark Hatch

Change by Design by Tim Brown (our entire class read this one)

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Pledge of Allegiance Anniversary

Teague flag

photo by Helen Teague

On October 12,1892  the Pledge of Allegiance was recited for by over 2 million students for the first time. The Pledge of Allegiance was written by a Baptist minister Francis Bellamy to mark the 400th anniversary of Christopher Columbus’ exploration to North America.

If you are on break from school tomorrow, Happy Columbus Day!

 

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Weekend Ed. Quote~October 11

You do have a story inside you; it lies articulate and waiting to be written — behind your silence and your suffering. ~Anne Rice, birthday, October 4th

lamp of 3 styles in office

This lamp reflects three generations and three styles of design…what is the story behind this lamp and the people in whose lives it has lived?

 

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More Ed. Quotes