Prototyping Frugal Education Cards

I’ve been hard at work noodling away on a collection of frugal education ‘action cards’ to help others apply frugal practices within their education designs. This idea came off the back of my recent work developing the frugal education aspects. The ‘cards’ expand upon each aspect and provide the user with actions they can apply to hopefully make their design more, frugal, practical, and sustainable.

I have always been a fan of physical tools for sparking creativity. We did the same kind of thing with the LEARN cards we developed at Coventry University’s Disruptive Media Learning Lab to great effect. These went on to inspire the PLAY cards designed by the Creative Culture team in Malaysia. There’s something special about using a tangible thing that simply cannot be replicated on screen or read in a word document.

Example card design.

Viewing each characteristic individually focuses the mind and allows you to organise each action in a physical space. It enables you to pass them around and work more collaboratively, combine them, and stick them on a board and make notes around them. Something is gained through this process, I’m not sure I can articulate exactly what it is, but the act of interacting with physical cards seems to spark creativity in a way I’ve never been able to replicate on screen. I’m sure there’ll be papers about this. 😁

So far there are 27 cards in total. 9 aspects with 3 characteristics for each. These have been selected to provide a wide array of frugal considerations to inspire creativity and innovative ideas. The card deck can be used as a standalone resource, but I’m also looking at developing a set of printable (or drawn) activity sheets that compliment them and expend their use case, as well as to provide a little more structure for those who might need a helping hand in applying them to their new, or pre-existing designs.

The cards themselves are still a work in progress, but I think the main content is pretty much there. In the spirit of the frugal aspects they showcase, rapid prototyping and design iteration is ongoing! If all goes well, the intention is to make the cards into an expandable resource that can be paired with other card activities, such as playful learning cards that are also in development, and even the pre-existing LEARN cards. Cards everywhere!

If you’ve got any cool ideas for how you might use these, or clever activity sheet ideas, then feel free to drop me a tweet or comment. πŸ‘

Frugal Education card prototypes.