Imagining Inventions


Have you ever wondered why ordinary objects change over time? For example, why would designers change toothbrush handles to be made out of bamboo instead of plastic? Why would engineers develop self-driving cars? Why might someone need a contact lens that takes your temperature? Designers don't just think about
the needs of the present, they also have to imagine what people might need in the future and use these ideas to create new and improved solutions! In this activity, you will also be creating a design concept for an invention of the future! You will learn about a fictional person, brainstorm some solutions to a problem they face, and create a concept sketch of your future thinking design idea.

Design Challenge

Create a concept sketch for a future thinking invention. Use the needs of a specific
user as your inspiration!

  • Paper

  • Something to write with

  • Sample User Cards (in PDF guide)

  • (Optional) Superhero Brainstorm or Mash-Up Brainstorm (in PDF guide)

  • (Optional) Colors (markers, pencils, crayons, etc.)


Design thinking, future thinking


30+ minutes

Key Concepts

User-centered design, concept sketching, brainstorming

Want a challenge?


Examine a piece of furniture in your living space. Can you think of ways to make it more comfortable or functional for everyone in your household?

Want a challenge?


Create a concept sketch for a future thinking invention. Use the needs of a specific user as your inspiration!

Want a challenge?


Designs can be functional and stylish! How will you make your design more fun and appealing so that your user is excited about it?

If you think this looks fun, wait ‘til you try these!

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