#DesignThyself Design

#DesignThyself on

I am teaching #DesignThyself, an online class on Skillshare starting April 20, 2013. Learn how to use design principles to acquire a new habit/behavior, make it stick, and document it online. Sign up today. The first 50 students to register can take the class for FREE! Use coupon code LAUNCHLO.

Are you interested in learning about design principles to affect change? Why not start with yourself? This class brings design thinking and design doing to a personal level. Throughout the course we will each design and document an intentional and proactive personal change in our lives. It could be learning a new skill, acquiring a new habit, or quitting an old one. The personal change could be related to health, sports, language learning, cooking, reading, or emotional/spiritual/creative practice. The projects should be related to personal growth and self-mastery, but also light-hearted, fun, and social. Think of it as part New Year’s resolution, part school science project (where you are your own guinea pig), and part reality show. My current #DesignThyself project is trying to learn basic conversational Korean in 4 months and then setting off on a Gangnam Style karaoke mission at the end of that time period.

Here are some #DesignThyself projects by my current students:

Examples of blogs of my current students here:

We will draw from the fields of interaction design, activism for social/cultural change, as well as cognitive psychology. Lectures, readings, and office hours will be supplemented by local discussion and support circles.

We will blog to document the “before,” “during,” and “after” of our personal transformation and engage with each others’ transformation through smaller online group discussions. #DesignThyself is not about “self-help.” It is about using (and demystifying) design principles to deal with change in a proactive way and to create beauty and meaning out of desire and necessity.

 Sign up today. The first 50 students to register can take the class for FREE! Use coupon code LAUNCHLO.

#DesignThyself Design for Social Innovation SVA SVA Design for Social Innovation SVADSI

#DesignThyself – Week 5

I got myself a Korean tutor. We are meeting next Monday! I’ll keep everyone posted, but I think I should have enlisted help much sooner.

I’ve made it halfway through Level 2 of Talk to Me in Korean. I’m continuing my Gangnam Style infinite repeat loops on my commutes to and from Staten Island. I think it’s starting to gel and enter my brain through my subconsciousness.

Two more awesome renditions of Gangnam Style:


#DesignThyself – Seeking Korean Tutor

Korean self-study for my #DesignThyself mission isn’t working out. I need some guidance and accountability. And the feedback of a native speaker. It’s hard to motivate myself without an actual Korean speaker to talk to.

So, I’m looking for a Korean tutor or conversation exchange. I could pay, but I prefer barter. You tutor me in in Korean, and I can offer one or more of the below:

  • I tutor you in English. I have 3+ years of experience teaching English as a Second language.
  • I help you with your English writing. I have experience as a journalist and writer.
  • I teach you design (web/visual/UX).
  • I teach you music (basic piano, ukulele, music recording/production)
  • I cook for you or I teach you how to cook.
  • I teach you blogging/social media.
#DesignThyself Music

#Design Thyself Week 4 – Gangnam Covers and Meditation

First, some video inspiration of other folk’s renditions of Gangnam Style:

This week, I have tweaked my routine to focus more on learning the lyrics to Gangnam Style. It’s my first week teaching at the College of Staten Island, so now I have a long-ish commute to SI from Manhattan twice a week. I have devoted this commute time to Gangnam-style meditation. Gangnam Style on repeat, over and over again. On the ferry, and then on the bus, all the way to school. After a few times, I end up in a trance. Just today, I caught myself mouthing the lyrics to a verse I didn’t even think I knew. Something is working. Maybe some more deliberate practice will help, but since I have nothing better to do during the commute, why not get into a Gangnam trance?

#DesignThyself Design for Social Innovation SVA SVA Design for Social Innovation

#DesignThyself Korean Challenge Week 3

We are now almost a month into our #DesignThyself Challenges in my Designing Change class at SVA Design for Social Innovation. I feel both good and a little behind. I need to both continue my momentum and develop a new learning strategy for the Gangnam

The Good
I am progressing along slowly but surely in my self study of basic Korean conversation. I have established a strong routine of DAILY exposure to Korean. This could mean listening to a Talk to Me in Korean podcast, going over a lesson in my Colloquial Korean book and recordings, or learning the Korean Word of the Day on my WordPower app. I have established first thing in the morning and just before bed as good learning times. Subway and ferry commutes are also a good time for listening to audio lessons.

The Not-So-Good
I have hardly progressed past learning the first verse of Gangnam Style. Despite listening to the song on repeat for many of my subway commutes, everything is just a blur of rapid fire syllables. I’m going to try a new audio-visual strategy of referring to the lyrics sheet while listening to the song, to see if I can follow along. I have only been listening right now. I’m going to have to be able to “read” the lyrics in karaoke anyway. Let’s see how this goes. I just PDF’ed the lyrics and loaded them on my iPad mini, so I can now listen and review lyrics visually on the go.