Lab Wonderfull and Playtronica, 2016-2017
When I returned to Moscow after getting an Interaction Design degree at CIID I was fortunate to have met Maria Stashenko. Maria is one of the founding partners at a design consultancy Lab Wonderfull and also runs the Creative Entrepreneurship program at British Higher School of Design (BHSD) in Moscow. I was fortunate to earn her trust and invitation to teach several short courses in Design Thinking and in particular on People-centered Research both at BHSD and at workshops hosted by Lab Wonderfull. Each of those workshops was done for groups of 25-40 students and the duration ranged between one and two days.
At the Creative Entrepreneurship program itself, I was responsible for the People-Centered Research track and gave 4 lectures along with facilitating several practical exercises and advising students on their first semester projects both from the standpoint of research and prototyping.
I very much like taking the role of a lecturer because it motivates me to structure my own knowledge and experience in preparing for my lectures. It also pushes me to learn new things to inspire my students. These workshops allow me to meet with people who have their own expertise on the topic of design and learn from them during our workshop activities.
In 2017 I was appointed the role of the Leader of Open Educational Programs at Lab Wonderful. I am thus responsible for structuring and curating our workshops and educational laboratory programs, as well as teaching People-centered research and other parts of those courses. I participate in the effort of creating new types of workshops where we blend Design Thinking with modern technologies like Machine Learning and VR/AR. This is an exciting part of my work at Lab Wonderfull which requires me to think both creatively and critically to design courses that bring the most value and inspiration to students.
Another place where I work at is called Playtronica - an artist collective that brought together professionals from such disciplines as music, engineering, pedagogy, graphic arts, and more.
Besides finding application for my interaction design skills, I also started teaching electronics and design thinking to kids and teenagers. I am responsible for the Tinkering activities that we run and recently structured a 4-day course on the topic which we are to launch in Spring 2017.
Playtronica was fortunate to be invited to teach at one of the best high schools in Russia - Lyceum "Second school". As part of this invitation, I lead the effort in building a curriculum for the art projects course for the freshman students. At the moment of this writing, we have already launched the program which consists of workshops in creative thinking, teamwork, prototyping and working with conductive materials and electronics to build interactive experience on the theme chosen by students themselves.