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20% Project

A project management and mentorship system based on a tiered participation and feedback system.

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Written by DeletedUser

20% Project is a mentorship and project management methodology that guides students on hands-on projects through planning, varying levels of assisted help, and constructive criticism. Let’s look at the case with Daniel, a high school sophomore who wants to learn robotics by building a simple robot to clean his room. Daniel is partnered with Dr. Roboto, a robotics expert, who will help Daniel plan out the first 5 steps of building CleanBot, starting with its head. Once the blueprint plans for CleanBot’s head are complete, Daniel will follow Dr. Roboto’s lead and work closely to complete the first step (lets consider this 100% participation). The second step, Dr. Roboto will assist Daniel at a 50% participation level. The third step, Daniel will take lead with minimal hands-on support from Dr. Roboto (this is roughly 10% participation level). For the last two steps, Daniel will work independently on the project while receiving constructive feedback from Dr. Roboto along the way. Once Daniel completes the 5th step, they will repeat the process with CleanBot’s body. Essentially, the expert will help the student complete at least 20-25% of the project tasks through the first 2 steps and give extensive feedback and encouragement for the last 3 steps. 

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Photo of My Ratarasarn
Team

Great idea! I like the idea of collaboration between students and professional. Also, doing 80% of the work themselves, students can feel confident and ownership in their work.

I am wondering how can we spread this system into real life? I can imagine that students might come up with some idea but doesn't know how to connect with a person who can help them. Maybe we can think of how can students find their mentors? Could it be some kind of tool where students can look for mentors or a service that pairing them up? If so, who will be the mentors? Are the mentors volunteering? Which platform should be used?

Photo of Anne-Laure Fayard
Team

Nice idea indeed. It can provide some of the structure and support that will allow young people to feel more comfortable and develop confidence.

Like My, I'm wondering how you are envisioning this "service" to be developed. Will it be something off-line? in that case, where (and when) will it take place? or is it something like an online platform where you would sign up with a mentor? In both cases, who would be the mentors?
Are you thinking of a "stand alone" service or more of a blue print or process that could be implemented in schools (at different age levels)?

Have you thought of how you would be piloting this idea?

Sorry for all these questions but I think this is an interesting idea and it would be great if you could articulate it and develop it a bit more.

Photo of Meena Kadri
Team

Lots of exciting questions here on developing your idea further. And I'm wondering from the photo – did you role play this?

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Team

DeletedUser

Thank you for your comments.

This can be implemented inside the school and outside of school as well.

We think it will be better to be an After school activity.

Each teacher that specializes in his/her area can serve as mentors. In addition, we can create a pool of volunteers among alumni of the school.

Ouside of school it can be implemented by using an online service that matches students with mentors.

Photo of My Ratarasarn
Team

You might be able to tie in with this idea for the online service http://www.openideo.com/open/creative-confidence/ideas/a-mentor-website-using-linkedin-to-connect-professionals-with-youth-in-need-of-creative-confidence./

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Team

DeletedUser

Hi Diverse Minds

I think this mentorship would be great to implement into schools. Out of schools might be a little tricky at first and may stunt its growth. With my own concept, things such as vetting, integrating online tools and sustaining engagement have been challenging to iron out. I've been thinking the support of local businesses and community organizations to start might be key to building the online presence.

Photo of DeletedUser
Team

DeletedUser

I've been thinking a lot about the role of mentorship in building creative confidence for middle and high schoolers in particular. One of the challenges in traditional mentorship models is that the mentors are "experts" already.

They appear, to the novice, to the kid who doubts his or herself, as someone whose life and work is unachievable. I've encountered this often in my work as a teacher, and now as a mentor to graduate students. I often hear young people say "but how do I get there from here, that person (that they admire) just so...creative/smart/talented/fill in the blank."

But what if the mentors weren't experts? What if they were college students, or recent graduates who are in a first job, or starting their own venture?

What if instead of experts, they were young people themselves, in their early twenties, who are actively engaging in learning and building--students at the D School, or in the MFA program I attended at Champlain College in Emergent Media, or many others.?

That way the more advanced students on their way to becoming experts would build their own creative confidence by mentoring younger students--and the younger students would have peers to look up to and learn from, but not be intimidated by.

I also agree with My Ratarasarn's idea, that this could potentially be tied to this project: http://www.openideo.com/open/creative-confidence/ideas/a-mentor-website-using-linkedin-to-connect-professionals-with-youth-in-need-of-creative-confidence./ and was going to suggest something similar until I saw Kelly Fooy's concept.