My family and I spent a pleasant afternoon in the East Bay Mini Maker Faire. There were lots of hands-on creative stations with activities for the whole family. One was a cramped woodworking shop where kids could build small race cars out of a block of wood and four large washers, and then race them down a slide.

The activity itself was basic, even if the kids were into it. After helping my son build his car, I was drawn to the writing on the workshop’s wall:

Designers Look Closely

Designers consider objects + systems

Look Closely Turn on your senses! What are the parts? Who are the people?

Explore Complexity

Explore Complexity Look for relationships What’s happening? How? Why? What’s the system?

Find Opportunity

Find Opportunity … for re-design, building, hacking, tinkering

The Engineering Design Process

I don’t know who wrote these, but I like them. Systems! An excellent primer for the kids, and a good reminder for makers of all ages.