School A Design Session 1

Korrin and Merissa visited Castle Primary School in summer term 2022 to work with young researchers with the aim of designing a tool, informed by the research findings.

We presented the edublog and a simple summary of the findings so far:

  1. The importance of customisation (whether this is colour/shape/animals etc);
  2. The importance of recognising multiple emotions being experienced at the same time;
  3. The importance of tracking emotions and observing how they change over a time period;
  4. The importance of reflection time so that there is space and time to observe;
  5. Children don’t always want to communicate how they feel.

With these aims in mind, students came up with 5 ideas and used post-it notes to discuss each idea and identify its strengths and limitations. Finally, the group agreed upon one final product idea.

We spent the 1st of 2 sessions deciding on a product and the 2nd session was spent discussing it in more detail and helping the designer, Merissa, to understand the vision of the students.


IDEA 1: A lanyard that could be customised with stickers

Participant 5:  The people who use these could have a lanyard and when you look on it you see an image and there is a keycode to understand it… a lanyard with a colour dictionary….a dictionary of emotions…A lanyard could even replace behaviour charts. They (teachers) could see how they (students) feel before they did something bad and then help them to stop it

Students drew a lanyard and labelled its strengths and limitations.


IDEA 2: A wristband, linking to an app

Participant 2:  a wristband that has a QR code and you can register your names and details and it can take you to an app

Participant 5: Each QR code can have its own designated emotion… you can show mixed emotions by scanning several QR codes

Participant 5: There’s already a  wristband that scans your blood pressure and that can show if you feel not well or upset.

Participant 2 : I think a lanyard is old fashioned

Participant 6 : We could combine ideas and develop a lanyard or wristband to be more modern and use a QR code


IDEA 3: A game using facial expressions

This idea came from a participant who enjoyed using play-doh to change and manipulate facial expressions.


IDEA 4: A graph/chart to map emotions

This idea aimed to identify multiple emotions happening simultaneously using numeracy and maths. Students explored ways this could be done and ways these emotions could be tracked to possibly identify triggers for emotions.



IDEA 5: A sign language initiative

This idea came from a participant who said he found it hard to physically say how he was feeling – even if he knew the words. The student researchers explored how sign language could be used in class to help students communicate how they were feeling.


FINAL IDEA – AGREED UPON: An activity book combining ideas 1, 3, 4 and 5 to be used in the classroom and supported with classroom time. The book will have stickers (1) that can be customised; games exploring facial features; activities mapping emotions and a sign language activity.