Chinese kids help adults to tell better stories

Telling stories is a fundamental part of human culture and not only children love it to immerse in exciting and imaginative storylines. A Design Thinking workshop with 30 Chinese children hosted by the HPI School of Design Thinking and the Chinese Startup YouthMBA from 30 July to 1 August was all about new and innovative ways of storytelling. YouthMBA offers different courses in Design Thinking and Entrepreneurship for children and teenagers all over China.



Photos: HPI School of Design Thinking


During three days, the schoolchildren learned and experienced how stories are being told in the innovative and experimental learning environment of the HPI D-School. "The children received the challenge to use the innovation method Design Thinking to develop creative solutions that help adults to tell great stories", explains HPI doctoral candidate and Design Thinking researcher Axel Menning who led the workshop together with innovation expert Miriam Yasbay.


Both workshop leaders wanted to show that everyone can create meaningful changes – no matter what age, gender or social background they have. "The special thing is that children experience storytelling as something that connects people. Stories are not only exciting and valuable for them but we all, young and old, share this experience. It is interesting that children become Design Thinking experts who develop solutions for adults in teams", says Miriam Yasbay.


During the workshop the children learned about different forms of storytelling and also tried them out. They interviewed adults, identified problems and developed solutions and imaginative prototypes for adults from their perspective. One of the resulting ideas is a message in a bottle that is trackable via GPS. The sender puts his or her personal story in the bottle, sends it on its journey to share it with a recipient in a distant place and to further exchange other stories with the respective recipient.


The workshop by YouthMBA and the HPI D-School took place for the second time in Potsdam.