Today I had design day in Gr. 10. Our design project is to create a model about how a heart valve works. Our design project is integrated with science. As in science we are learning about human body functions, specifically the heart. The first activity we did was to create a mind map (figure 1) about what we already know, what we want to know and how we find out with a group that our science teacher assigned. I thought that our group worked quite well together as we had one scribbler and the rest of us fed ideas and the scribbler jot down ideas. Then we had to label the hearts arteries, veins and chambers (figure 2). My key takeaway from that activity was that if a group worked well together, our works quality would be exceptional with time saved. However if we could do it again, I think I would be more focused because our team would go offtrack. Then we were given some materials, first we had to sketch what we would do with the materials provided to create an artificial heart valve. This was separate as at the end we would compare ideas and chose which one was the best. Then we were told to build the heart valve. Our first prototype didn’t work as the pressurize didn’t work with paperclips. Then we used a different concept of representing a valve as we allowed the water to flow through the valve, however when we flipped the tube, a ping-pong ball stopped the water from flowing back into the tube. From that activity, I learned that it’s okay to fail that we we learn from our mistakes. Also, a productive team is essential for these kind of projects as the more hands and thinking power, the merrier. If I could do it again, I would get my group to be more focus as some of my team members (including me) were off task which wasted time that should have been devoted to creating the artificial heart valve. I used to think that a project should fulfill the requirements from the starting stage (planning) to the final product. However after this design project, I know now that it’s okay to fail as we learn from mistakes.
Figure 3 (below)