All You Need To Know About Design Thinking For Children

A famous quote says, ‘necessity is the mother of invention.’ It is true. Before, people only travelled on foot, but our ancestors found the necessity to move around water; hence water vessels were invented. But the invention is impossible without design thinking. It is why parents must introducedesign thinking for children to their kids.

Besides the STEM education in Singapore, parents should also enrol their kids to design thinking classes. This article will discuss everything you need to know about design thinking.

All You Need To Know About Design Thinking For Children

A STEM programme in Singapore is not all about numbers and theories as many people perceive it to be. There is also room for imagination and creativity in STEM classes.

For example, your teacher tasked you to create shoes that let you walk on water. What is the first step you’ll take in creating the shoes? It is planning the design.

What is design thinking?

Design thinking is the process of giving solutions to problems using product design and service. From the problem above, how do you make shoes walk on water?

The person should think of the design first. Life jackets float on the water because of the air inside them. Does filling your shoes with air work? Ducks’ webbed feet allow them to navigate through the waters. Will the shoe work if you incorporate this theory into the design of your shoes?

Design thinking is finding solutions to existing problems with the use of a little bit of science and creativity.

MostSTEM classes in Singapore include design thinking programmes to encourage inventiveness in kids. It can be helpful when they pursue sciences, engineering, and business in the future.

What Are Design Thinking Steps?

Indesign thinking activities for children, kids usually follow these steps:

STEP #1: Empathy

In this stage, children have to empathise with the users, be in their shoes and set aside their assumptions to fully and deeply understand their problem.

This process may also include observation of the issue. The observations can provide instrumental information that can be used in the actual design of the product and service.

STEP #2: Define

The information and observation the children gathered during the empathy stage can be used to define the problem. They will analyse the information and observation and begin pinpointing the core issues; hence coming up with the statements of the problem.

STEP #3: Ideate

In this phase of the design thinking activity for children, the kids will begin sharing their ideas and suggest solutions as to how they can solve the problem. They will start brainstorming, scrap not feasible suggestions, and combine ideas before finalising and settling for the best ideas.

STEP #4: Prototype

In this stage, the children will begin bringing to life the ideas by building a smaller version of their design. By making a prototype, the children can identify the flaws and limitations of their design. They can improve it for a better user experience of the design.

STEP #5: Test

In the testing stage, children have already eliminated the flaws of their design and revamped it to become the most effective solution to the problem they are solving.

The children will test the product and observe if it can solve the problem. If not, they will go back to the previous stages, such as generating ideas to improve the design and fully transform it.

What are the benefits of design thinking activities for children?

You must wonder why STEM classes in Singaporeconduct design thinking activities for children. The truth is, these activities hone your child’s life skills.

Here are the benefits of design thinking activities for children:

1. Stimulates curiosity

Our ancestors would not have invented water vessels when they did not ask questions and take action to find answers. Is there land beyond the waters? Is it easier to travel on the water than on foot? Curiosity gives birth to many inventions.

2. Improves problem-solving skills

Design thinking activities are giant problem-solving activities. Children first identify the problem. Then they collect information about the issues through observation, interviews, and readings.

They generate ideas as to how to solve the problem. They put their ideas into action by creating prototypes and testing their hypotheses. Children do it again and again until they achieve the best solution to their problem.

3. Encourages originality and creativity

As people say, there are millions of ways to solve a problem. Design thinking activities for children encourage them to think out of the box. They can come up with an original idea or combine all ideas to build a unique one.

4. Teaches perseverance

Not all ideas will work, not all hypotheses are correct, and not all designs are perfect on the first try. These failures will teach children the importance of perseverance. If it would take a hundred trials to find the correct design, so be it.

5. Encourages awareness

Solving other people’s problems increases the child’s awareness of the needs of the community. This social consciousness is an important skill to have as the child grows older.

Applications Of Design Thinking



Design thinking is not only for inventions, engineering, or things related to STEM education in Singapore.Here are the other applications of design thinking:

1. Business

Design thinking methods are crucial in improving products and services and enhancing the business operation processes to boost efficiency and productivity.

2. Healthcare

Many hospitals and healthcare providers use design thinking methods to improve and optimise their services and solve problems in the healthcare system, such as reducing operating costs, removing language barriers, and catering to the less fortunate.

3. Education

Design thinking can solve tons of problems in the education sector. For example, if there is a high case of bullying in the school, the admin can use design thinking to come up with an approach that will minimise bullying cases. Will student-parent events in school help? How about more counselling for students?

It only proves that design thinking is crucial in any spectrum of professional development in Singapore.


The good thing about a STEM programme in Singapore is it instils design thinking in students at a young age. They can develop essential life skills throughdesign thinking activities for children. Moreover, design thinking is also the building block for future inventors, engineers, entrepreneurs, managers, teachers, and healthcare workers.

IDE Academy Singapore provides STEM classes in Singapore. Visit IDE Academy Singapore today.