What is your project idea? What is you value proposition?
Students create a short pitch to communicate their top ideas and to then decide on a final project to develop with the class.
Warm Up Exercise (10 Mins)
Customize a community building warm up activity for your group needs. You can consult the following resources for ideas:
● Warm Ups in Design Thinking
● Partners for Youth Empowerment
● Icebreakers & Teambuilders
● Inuit Games
Experiential Activity: The Kiggavik Nest (30mins+)
Step 1. Create a pitch. Students prepare a short presentation to pitch their ideas to friends and family. The
presentation should communicate:
- An overview of the project idea
- The value proposition of the project
- The users targeted with the project
- A prototype or sketch of the idea
- A description of the prototype
You can watch the popular show “Dragons Den” for examples of pitches.
Step 2. The Kiggavik Nest. To inspire students and to shed light onto the community’s needs, members of the community are invited to pitch their project ideas. In CCD, this is known as, “The Kiggavik Nest” (Falcon Nest). The Kiggavik Nest is a playful take on the format popularized by TV shows like “Dragon’s Den” and “Shark Tank”. However, rather than having an expert panel of entrepreneurs judge the various ventures, it’s the students who choose and invest their time into the projects. Allowing students to choose their project increases engagement and provides them with a sense of ownership and responsibility.
a. Candidates are presented with available times to pitch their project. Ideally, all pitches take place on the same day, and should be 3-5 minutes in length. On the selected day, the presenters come ready to pitch their ideas to the group. Some are formal, others informal. There are no set expectations, all ideas are welcome. Projects are often at varying levels of development. Some are just ideas, while others may be part of a larger project or already partially developed.
b. Present the students with a timetable of who will be presenting and their topic and explain student responsibilities – to be active listeners, take notes, and to think about questions that will help them better understand the project and its possibilities (e.g. How much time is required? Is there any existing funding?
What skills are required?). At this time it is also important to think about how to best set up the space so all
members can be engaged.
c. Prior to the pitches, prepare and set-up space. Create a semi circle with a podium or space for the presenter at the centre of the semi circle.
d. Kiggavik Nest format:
- Presenter comes
- Pitch (3-5 min)
- Question period
- Presenter leaves
Question period: Students should hold back on asking about details as that may be part of the pitch.
Instead, ask students to write additional questions that come to mind and to (quietly) note on a scale from 0
-10 how much they liked the project.
Debrief: After the pitch discuss for 5 minutes.
- What did you think about the project?
- What additional questions do you have?
- How practical is the project?
- What alternatives and/or modifications could be implemented to make it more practical?
- What did you think of the presentation/presenting style – was it engaging? Why?
- Ask each student to input a rating 0 -10. (Although this won’t determine which project gets chosen, it may facilitate project elimination.)
Closing: Send heartfelt thanks to all participants for their contributions and share insight into the next steps
and process of narrowing down the project.
Step 3. Project Exploration. After the pitches, creativity is at an all time high. Ideas bounce around and there is a desire to define a project immediately. In order to avoid a premature decision, students go through a process that allows them to dissect each project proposal. “Project Exploration” allows everyone to understand the nits and grits that would go into the execution of any one project, while thinking of which idea will put the team in the best position to succeed.
The teacher summarizes what students thought of the various projects. Through this, some projects can be easily eliminated. Discuss the pros and cons of the remaining projects. Facilitate this by asking students to think about the following:
- Does this project interest / excite you?
- How feasible is it?
- What impact might it have?
After students have had a bit more time to digest the projects, write the remaining projects up on a whiteboard. Tell students they are allowed to choose only THREE project ideas. Ask students to place a check mark beside each of their top three favourite choices. From this new set of data, choose the three most popular projects.
Students should now have chosen a solid group of projects which they all feel confident and excited about (approximately 3). To perform the exploration students work in “break-out groups”, with each group dissecting one project, OR with each group rotating to dissect all of the final projects. This can be done on poster paper, whiteboards, or any other medium that allows students to explore the projects. Project Exploration Guidelines can include:
- Determine project goal – In one or two sentences define the project’s goal (you can use SMART goals – specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time limited)
- Determine mini goals – List the smaller goals that are apart of the larger goal
- Project impacts – Why is it important? Who benefits? Use a sustainability lens.
Outcomes – What skills, new knowledge and understandings might you get through this project?
- Team Assets (roles) – What skills and roles can all members of the team bring? This also includes teachers and other community contacts.
- Steps to Success – Write a short list of things you will need to do and consider to carry out this project
- Weekly goals (think scope) – What might each week look like?
- Questions – What questions do you have about this project that would need answering?
- Rating (0-10) – Based on interest, feasibility, impact, as a group, rate the project.
After answering all the questions for each project, students reunite as a larger group to present and discuss their thoughts about the projects. In the democratic process, students choose a project that best reflects the group’s interests as a whole.
Note: Projects can be modified, scaled, and/or combined. If one or two students are strongly against the
chosen project, talk with them separately to discuss alternatives. Perhaps they could do a related side
project that speaks to their interests and/or skills, or do something different altogether. It is important to
address such situations early as students are much more likely to be engaged and invested in the project if
they are interested in it.
Debrief and Reflection (10 mins)
- What? What did you think about this process?
- So What? What were some ideas that were lost in the process? What are the details of the chosen project
- Now what? What are you excited about? Create a one page description of the chosen project.