During the international conference held in Ljubljana from 7/10 to 9/10 dedicated to integrated leadership in school practice (ILSP project), Silvia Lecchi, who is AFP Patronato San Vincenzo referring teacher on the project, presented Design thinking as a best practice for the educational world, also presenting the project and the results obtained so far.

The conference was attended by teachers, trainers, school leaders from Italy, Slovenia, Estonia, Belgium and the Czech Republic.

The actions envisaged by the Action For Future project have been taken as a positive example of how Design Thinking is strategic in the education sector.

The Design Thinking concept for education is a problem-based learning paradigm that builds on three pillars: full awareness of the problem to be solved and the people involved, creative problem-solving skills, active engagement of all the participants in the action-oriented exercise.

The essence of Design Thinking is to put participants into contexts that make them think and work towards the solution of a question thereby developing empathy, cultural awareness as well as critical thinking and willingness to take action.

It has roots in and interconnections two participatory designs, serious play (e.g. construction bricks), bricolage, tinkering and making, sharing both tools and techniques as well as characteristic traits and outcomes.

Motivations for using Design Thinking in education are typically multifaceted: educators are hoping for surprising ideas, elegant solutions and novel concepts, they want to facilitate a learning event in a new format and induce transferable skills and competencies among the participants. Cooperative learning, empathy, positivity and critical thinking towards a feasible solution will empower the students with self-confidence and promote an active citizenship further on.

In this context the «Action for Future» project combines the efforts of 5 partners, supporting adult trainers in the delivery of training to young adults in risk through the design thinking methodology for civic engagement and participation.

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