Crossing boundaries with Lego Serious Play

  • Alison James: Associate Dean, Learning and Teaching, LCF
  • Fred Meller: Senior Lecturer, BA Performance Design and Practice, CSM

Brief description of session and activities

LSP is a multidimensional, metaphorical tool for exploring complex issues and relationships, making connections, mapping terrain, and creatively generating ideas. Both accredited LSP facilitators, Alison and Fred will share their collective experiences of using LSP- Fred with the DIAL project and external facilitation, Alison for teaching and learning (for which she won a UAL Excellent Teaching Award in 2013), research and team/individual development. Through their work with LSP they have been struck by the potency of its approaches for collecting and sharing perspectives, deepening understanding of issues, generating ideas and new insights and enabling people to work through difficult situations and move on.

LSP is grounded in Papert’s constructionist philosophy that we learn through making, and the premise of what its founders refer to as ’ hand knowledge’ or thinking through our fingers, due to the high proportion of nerve ending found in these. LSP combines a series of building processes, reflection and discussion to allow people to create metaphorical models of real issues and construct and adjust potential scenarios. By using a three dimensional approach, users of LSP can incorporate multisensory information, as well as size and scale in a more memorable form than perhaps by using flipchart and pen.

In addition to being introduced to LSP techniques and their use at UAL already, participants will have hands on experience of LSP activities and the opportunity to discuss how LSP can be further used for collaboration and for breaking down barriers. One vehicle for this will be the UAL LSP community of practice, launched in Autumn 2013, and co-led by Alison and Fred.

How will students be involved in the session?

The student will be heard in the session through their written (and video, if quality of recording permits) reflections on how using LSP has supported development of learning, self awareness, and understanding of others. Students may also include staff who have encountered LSP as part of academic or professional qualifications.

What will participants take away from the session?

  • A fresh perspective on creative thinking techniques
  • A basic understanding of the principles of LSP and the applicability of metaphor as a modelling language
  • Ideas about how to use LSP for teaching, learnnig, research, business development and practice
  • An invitation to join the UAL LSP community of practice