Learning to Treasure Wild Ducks with IBM

By Elise Saenger-Heyl

There is a saying, “treasure your wild ducks,” meaning value the outside-the-box thinkers and those who will try new things to push the envelope.  IBM strives to live by this philosophy as they implement Agile and Design Thinking.

We were fortunate to be the group from SummerSTEM that traveled to IBM for our second immersion day. We had a great time learning about the facets of IBM and working hands-on to understand the processes of Agile and Design Thinking.

Throughout the day, IBM emphasized the importance of failing.  IBM team members shared the important learning  that occurs when people try, fail, and ask questions. This was  stressed as we learned the process of design thinking. This type of design guides people toward increased innovation. Through engaging activities, we were able to use design thinking successfully and to see  the importance of inquiry and make connections to the classroom .

Our design thinking guide summed it up best: “Sometimes the best way to learn is to make mistakes.” This message has been continuously reiterated this week, and is one that we will strive to bring back to our classrooms having seen it in action in industry.

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