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Can design education have a positive impact on primary school education beyond merely preparing designers? As designers, we know almost intuitively that design education is ‘good education’, and most designers would affirm that it would be beneficial to expose children to design education, because of the benefits of the signature pedagogies of design, such as problem-based learning, human centred creativity and iterations of prototyping and testing.
This paper seeks to review and synthesize existing literature and make preliminary analyses, which will support the development of design thinking education interventions at primary school level, which could lead to a paradigm shift in education at this level. While it has been widely demonstrated that design education can play a successful role in supporting traditional education models in the delivery of skills such as math and language arts, this paper seeks to demonstrate that in addition to meeting traditional education demands, design thinking principles in children’s education, such as empathy, collaboration and facilitation, human-centeredness, and creativity by iterations of prototyping and testing, will provide a sound base for children not only seeking to enter a design profession in the future but moving into any profession in the future and will lead to higher engagement at school and greater success in life.