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Design-in-Progress Talks can help students express ideas about why a design performed as it did and to consider what its performance means for their next iteration, recognizing that designs are tested and refined multiple times. A class might share common problems they are facing in building with the materials, discuss why a particular designed performed as it did, analyze and synthesize testing data, and hypothesize how particular features of their designs might be modified to improve their performance.

Ultimately, Design-in-Progress talks offer opportunities for students to evaluate arguments in favor of or against specific design features. These conversations push students to move beyond “show-and-tell” of their own design, and even beyond sharing what they like or would change about their peers’ design, to think together about the particular mechanisms of individual designs.

Design-in-Progress Talks

Why did a design perform as it did? What features should we change?

Sample Teacher Prompts

What problems did you encounter in building or testing your designs?
(Select a particular prototype) What do you notice about this design? Why do you think it performs in this way?
What changes should we make to our designs to make them more successful?

Design Talks
& the NGSS

Ideally, engineering design tasks provide an exciting context for students to engage in the NGSS practices. However, in reality, it can be challenging for a small group of students on their own to apply the full power of these practices to an engineering design process. Design Talks can help!

Design-in-Progress Talks can support students to engage in:

2. Developing and using models

4. Analyzing and interpreting data

7. Engaging in argument from evidence

Classroom Video Examples

Access Video Examples

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