Samsung’s ‘Smart Thinking’ project, launched last March in collaboration with LAGO, a prominent Italian design brand, brought together more than 44,000 students and nearly 1,500 teachers for an exercise in design thinking. The project invited 1,700 primary- and secondary-school classes from across Italy to dream up effective and innovative ways to improve the world around them.
The students collaborated on projects requiring them to utilize computational thinking skills to redesign their school environments to better suit their needs. Participating classes were given educational kits to guide them through the creative design process, and the three classes whose projects were deemed the most exceptional out of the 549 submissions were rewarded with Samsung technology and unique digital training opportunities. A team of LAGO professionals also helped the winners furnish their schools with their winning designs.
‘Smart Thinking’ is an evolution of the ‘Smart Coding’ program, launched by Samsung in 2015 with the objective of making coding and computational thinking instruction accessible to students, teachers and parents—in line with the Italian Ministry of Education’s guidelines. Eight hundred Italian schools were involved in the project, which offered students a chance to develop creative thinking and problem solving skills that they may successfully apply at school, at work, and in their lives.
‘Smart Coding’ and ‘Smart Thinking’ are part of the ‘Smart Future’ project—a corporate citizenship initiative launched by Samsung in 2013, in cooperation with the Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore in Milan, and managed by an advisory board of education experts. The goal of the program is to drive the evolution of the Italian education system to help children develop competitive skills that will open doors to exciting opportunities in their futures.
‘Smart Future’ promotes digital teaching in primary and secondary Italian schools through the provision of technologies such as as e-boards and tablets, as well as the training and engagement of students, teachers and parents. Testament to the program’s success, after digitalizing 37 schools, a memorandum of understanding was signed with the Italian Ministry of Education to accelerate the classroom-augmenting program, which had previously been capped at digitalizing 100 schools.