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Learning Cookbook

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About Its Development

The design of educational experiences are complex and not a ‘selection’ process. There is the opportunity for creativity from a transitional space, from a cookbook that could facilitate ‘surprising’ thinking. Instead of a linear ‘recipe’ often found in a cookbook, I have developed a card set that is open-ended, non-linear, and somewhat vague, allowing space for the user. 

Cards each tend to hold only one idea, which provides the person with immersion into the singular concept. Eno, speaking about creative pursuits for musicians, explains that “fewer possibilities that are more interesting is more helpful than a larger number of options”  (Cardazzo and Ward, 1989).

Through Actor-Network Theory, cards hold power and influence over other things (Latour, 1992). A card ‘wants’ to be deliberated by a human and the effect of an idea on a person is evident. 

The goal for this cookbook is to create a transitional space, to provide the user with “an ‘answer’ that provokes us to keep thinking” (Ellsworth, 2004). 

You cannot give someone the experience of their learning self; yet, we are capable of designing places that elicit profoundly moving experiences of encountering the “outside” and the power which we attribute to “masterful” teaching and to “pedagogical masterpieces.”

(Ellsworth, 2004)

These cards are inspired by the ‘game’ dynamics from Don’t/Do This Game by Roos (2018), where six cards are drawn from different categories that are complementary goals or restrictions, and the players discuss and brainstorm possible solutions. New cards can be drawn to replace one or all visible cards. Such cards can also be used as a reference, tool, or prompt. 

The Development of prompts

There are six categories in the cards:

  • Activity 
  • Teaching technique 
  • Accessibility 
  • Student 
  • Student wants 
  • Learning Objective 

The activities are a mixture of common teaching and leisure activities and tools. 

Teaching techniques include various interventions common in various pedagogies (behaviourism, constructivism), gamification, and from techniques to elicit participation. 

Bates (2019) describes “three issues related to students to consider for choosing media and technology: 

  • student demographics;
  • access; and
  • differences in how students learn.” 

These areas will act as three categories for the game. 

Access considerations were determined based upon real concerns considering in-person versus remote access, physical and temporal constraints, social pressures, and deaf/blind. 

The students’ classifications include the demographics as well as psychographics (to make things more interesting, and less discriminatory by sex, race, income, etc.), including personalities and expertise. Four personalities were taken from each of the four categories as defined by Neris Analytics Limited (2022) based upon the Myers-Briggs Type Indicator.

Differences in how students learn is presented as ‘what students want’ from the learning experience. Willis (2019) presents survey results sharing why thousands of people choose to visit a museum, and McCarthy’s 4MAT framework that attempts to categorize the way people learn. 

Learning objectives are found from various sources, including curricular competencies in BC curriculum for Grade 5, from Don’t/Do This Game targeting relevant global issues, and what Dumont, Istance, Benavides, & Groff (2010) identify as traits for self-regulated learners. 

The prompts

Create an Activity 

  • Create a problem-based activity 
  • Create a game
  • Create a system (Roos, 2018)
  • Create an app
  • Create something for the future (Roos, 2018)
  • Create a medium (Roos, 2018)
  • Create a vehicle
  • Create a tool 
  • Create a toy
  • Create a device
  • Create an assessment 
  • Create discussion prompts 
  • Create a relay  
  • Create a competition 
  • Create a gallery

With a Teaching Technique 

  • With a variable reward
  • With a trigger-action-reward cycle 
  • With cooperation
  • With opportunity for self-organization 
  • With opportunity for free play 
  • With scaffolding
  • With a surprise
  • With instant feedback
  • With an invitation to participate 
  • With the use of characters
  •  With a ritual
  • With deception
  • With an edge to overcome
  • With eliciting flow
  • With visible learning

To be Accessible

  • Solely in-person
  • Using only audio
  • Using only visuals 
  • Conducted completely remotely
  • Completed within a ten minute session 
  • Involving multiple session over days 
  • Including in-person and remote instances 
  • Without using digital technology 
  • Where allowing empty time is fundamental 
  • Addressing discriminatory contingency cues (i.e. is diversity valued)
  • Addressing discriminatory prejudices 
  • That costs less than $1 / student in materials
  • To maximize participation / minimize moments of sole observations 
  • To be done in a public setting, with onlookers 
  • To appeal to a 4 minute timespan 

For students 

  • For more than 1000 people (Roos, 2018) 
  • For high energy kids (Roos, 2018)
  • For elderly people (Roos, 2018)
  • For adolescents (Roos, 2018)
  • For entrepreneurs (NERIS Analytics Limited, 2022)
  • For executives (NERIS Analytics Limited, 2022)
  • For diplomats (NERIS Analytics Limited, 2022)
  • For architects (NERIS Analytics Limited, 2022)
  • For complete beginners
  • For experts 

Who have preferences

  • Who want to be together with people (Willis, 2019)
  • Who want to be comfortable (Willis, 2019)
  • Who want to enjoy the challenge of a new experience (Willis, 2019)
  • Who want to find an opportunity to learn (Willis, 2019)
  • Who want to do something active (Willis, 2019)
  • Who want to seek meaning – to know why (McCarthy, Germain, & Lippitt, 2002)
  • Who want to seek information and facts – to know what (McCarthy, Germain, & Lippitt, 2002)
  • Who want to problem-solve – to know ‘how-it-works’ (McCarthy, Germain, & Lippitt, 2002)
  • Who want to self discover/ to trial-and-error – to know ‘what if’ (McCarthy, Germain, & Lippitt, 2002)

To meet a learning objective 

  • To develop meta-cognitive skills (Dumont, Istance, Benavides, & Groff, 2010)
  • To regulate emotions and motivations during the learning process (Dumont, Istance, Benavides, & Groff, 2010)
  • To set higher specific and personal goals, and monitor them  (Dumont, Istance, Benavides, & Groff, 2010)
  • To identify fake news 
  • To reduce waste (Roos, 2018)
  • To save the environment (Roos, 2018) 
  • To survive the zombie apocalypse (Roos, 2018) 
  • To break the ice
  • To describe how artists use things to create and communicate (British Columbia Ministry of Education, 2022a)
  • To recognize the intersection of their personal and public digital identities and the potential for both positive and negative consequences (British Columbia Ministry of Education, 2022a)
  • To improve writing skills (British Columbia Ministry of Education, 2022c)
  • To connect mathematical concepts to other areas and personal interests (British Columbia Ministry of Education, 2022d) 
  • To analyze and describe the connections between eating, physical activity, and mental well-being (British Columbia Ministry of Education, 2022e)
  • To outline basic structures and functions of the human body (British Columbia Ministry of Education, 2022f)
  • To understand how natural resources continue to shape the economy (British Columbia Ministry of Education, 2022g)


Bates, A. W. (2019). Students – Teaching in a Digital Age. Retrieved from Open Text BC:

British Columbia Ministry of Education. (2022a). Arts Education 5. Retrieved from

British Columbia Ministry of Education. (2022b). Career Education 5. Retrieved from 

British Columbia Ministry of Education. (2022c). English Language Arts 5, 

British Columbia Ministry of Education. (2022d). Mathematics 5, Retrieved from 

British Columbia Ministry of Education. (2022e). Physical and Health Education 5, Retrieved from 

British Columbia Ministry of Education. (2022f). Science 5, Retrieved from 

British Columbia Ministry of Education. (2022g). Social Studies 5. Retrieved from

Cardazzo, G. & Ward, D.  (1989). Imaginary Landscapes [Film documentary]. UK: Eyeplugin Media Corporation / Filmakers.

Dumont, H., Istance, D., Benavides, F., & Groff, J. (2010). The Nature of Learning: Using Research to Inspire Practice. Centre for Educational Research and Innovation.

Ellsworth, L. (2004). Media, Architecture, Pedagogy. Routledge.

Latour, B. (1992) ‘Where are the missing masses? The sociology of a few mundane artifacts’, in Bijker, W. E. and Law, J. (eds) Shaping Technology/Building Society: Studies in Sociotechnical Change, Cambridge, MA, MIT Press, pp. 225-58.

McCarthy, B., Germain, C., & Lippitt, L. (2002). The 4MAT research guide, about Learning, Incoroporated, Wauconda, Illinois.

NERIS Analytics Limited. (2022). Personality Types. Retrieved from

Roos, D. (2018). Don’t/Do This Game [Board Game]. BIS Publishers.

Willis, T. (2019). Exhibit Development: The Art of Storytelling in Exhibitions.  B.C. Museums Association. Retrieved from: