JOHNSEY, R., 1993. Observing the way primary children design and make in the classroom: an analysis of the behaviours exhibited. IDATER 1993 Conference, Loughborough: Loughborough University
The process of designing and making has been described in various ways, often as a simplified flow of events from identifying a problem or need to the final evaluation of the end-product. Similarly the literature which promotes practical problem solving often describes it as a process which has stages similar if not identical to those used for design and technology. More recently the APU has developed the concept of an interactive process between "head" and "hand" 1. Their model, however, is still a simplified linear one which uses broad categories to describe the behaviour of the designer.
How accurately do these models reflect reality? How much are they based on observations of children designing and making? Are there behaviours which children exhibit which are not described in these models? This paper describes a pilot study for a research project using video to record the behaviour of children as they carry out short design and make tasks. A graphical representation of the process of design will be introduced and used to show that the models we use do not necessarily reflect reality.