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Honestly, I don’t go to Starbucks very often. I’m really more of a “sleep as late as possible and then run through Sonic and get a Coke with a Jr. Breakfast Burrito” kind of girl. Earlier this week though, I was all excited about discussing some Starbucks talk with my Digital Design kiddos.


We are at that time of the year where we have come up on a BIG project, re-designing a company logo, business card, and blog header for a company using Adobe Illustrator.

If you know me, you know I just LOVE it when I get to discuss logo design with my students in class, and more importantly, when we get to spend time looking at all the totally cool and awesome logos. We all know the Starbucks logo is highly recognizable as well as mysterious, I mean, what in the world doe s a funny two tailed mermaid have to do with coffee? So, I decided to use this as an example in class and discuss the journey of building the logo and Starbucks brand with my Digital Design kiddos in class.

I did my research, found the infographics and looked things up on the Internet.
On A-Day, I stand up at the front of the room and visit the websites on my projector and show all the cool info and goodies I found with my class of young minds…….

Then that afternoon it hits me. How in the world am I preparing my students to be self motivated learners if I’m the one standing up at the front of the classroom doing all the research!?!?!?!? This also does not follow the ideal of the “flipped classroom” concept that has recently become increasingly popular. I realized my approach to this lesson was all wrong. I needed to have the kids do some of this exploration work!

My B-day approach was much different. I started off the day with having my students research the history of the Starbucks logo and report their relevant findings on our group message board in Edmodo.

My students' links they provided as a result of the Starbucks research.

My students’ links they provided as a result of the Starbucks research.

Then, as a class we shared what we found on the internet and explored the provided links we found together on the projector. The students found more value in the information they discovered and it helped them retain ownership over the lesson.

Especially for high school students, I think its important for the students to find value in what they are learning as well as be able to take ownership of it. One of my main priorities as a teacher is to demonstrate to my students how to feed their curiosity and become self motivated, lifelong learners. Some really hate it at first, especially when I won’t simply tell them how to spell a word and I make them go to dictionary.com to look it up, but in the end it usually pays off, and the students grow to become more self reliant by the end of the year.

So there’s my big lesson for the week–don’t overdo by doing something your students can be doing themselves and as a result grow from it!