A storm be comin'


Ahoy, me matey! A storm be comin'. A brainstorm, that be. Find four buckos 'n gather round. Come up wit' new ideas, 'tis be our battle we fight.

ahem. excuse me. oi seem ter 'av been speakin' in pirate. don't nu waaat 'as come over me. if yer couldn't quite catch waaat de assignment wus,

Wowza. I did it again. Let's try this one more time.

Improv game + Brainstorming = Lots of new ideas for Holiday Decorations

Now I'm speaking like the engineer that I am.
Like I said before. The assignment was to gather four (or more) friends together and brainstorm ideas for our given theme. In order to do such a thing, we were also tasked with creating and playing an original improv game to get warmed up. As you have found, my brain was still playing the game when I started typing...

Based on another existing improv game (create a story, phrase by phrase around the circle) this game involved everyone speaking in a different accent as we went around the circle. I think this added a lot to the game to get past the usual monotony of thinking of a single word or phrase.

Let it be known that I sat down with 5 of my fraternity brothers of varying majors. Figured I would put that out there before posting all of the pictured ideas.

In blogging last week, I came up with these two problem statements regarding the theme of Holiday Decorations.

Problem/Needs Statements:
1. Joy needs a small set of decorations that are easily stored and cat-proof for her small apartment.

2. Morgan needs a set of decorations she can start using before December 1st (as her roommates won't let her) to get into the holiday spirit, hopefully including technology.

And going further from there, I came up with these two HMW statements.

How might we statements:
1. How might we decorate for a small space with durable, easy to store items?

2. How might we incorporate personal technology into decorating for the holidays?

During the first session working on HMW #1, here are a few of the ideas we came up with as a group.

Screen Shot 2013-11-18 at 2.32.24 PM.jpg
Credit: David Thomas

Screen Shot 2013-11-18 at 2.35.48 PM.jpg
Credit: Ross Neumann

Screen Shot 2013-11-18 at 2.34.47 PM.jpg
Credit: Joe Van Horn

Screen Shot
Credit: Rober Johnson

After a short food/drink break and another improv warm up to get back into it, the group came up with these ideas for HMW #2.

Screen Shot 2013-11-18 at 2.33.49 PM.jpg
Credit: Robert Johnson

Screen Shot 2013-11-18 at 2.36.52 PM.jpg
Credit: Robert Johnson

Screen Shot 2013-11-18 at 2.36.08 PM.jpg
Credit: David Thomas

Screen Shot 2013-11-18 at 2.32.37 PM.jpg
Credit: David Thomas

Screen Shot
Credit: Ross Neumann

After all the ideas were collected, they were categorized into 3 groups:
1| Cat-proof
2| Specifically Small
3| Dual Use

As the brainstorm and pictures were drawn on larger sheets of paper (not one per page, definitely fix for next time) it was not advantageous to separate each picture/idea into a group, so each one was rewritten on it's specific group list, one for each category.

At 47 ideas in 30 minutes and 5 people, the IPM was at 0.314. Definitely not as good as I had hoped it would be. When a couple people in the group don't come up with any (or hardly any ideas, it brings down the IPM for everyone. A few of us though of many ideas (not specifically the best ones, but ideas nonetheless) while a couple came up with almost none. Sounds like I need to brainstorm with more creative people to start out with.


You have a great conversational style for your blog, and your improv game sounds fun. However, I'm interested to see what the rest of your brainstorming session was like.

Nice blog post! I like the accent. You provide evidence of creativity in North Dakotans - there are so few who believe it's possible. :-)

I like that you described your group up front. Your game does sound fun, but the description was not totally clear to me. I had to read it twice, and still relied some on your description from lecture. You make some assumptions regarding the prior knowledge of your audience, and that can be dangerous.

HMW statements are clear and derive nicely from your problem statements. I'm glad you included both.

Did your process for categorization work well? Did it allow for an idea to move between categories? Again, more information here would be helpful.

Did you brainstorm both HMW statements simultaneously? Your IPM is presented as a singular number. Also, I wondered about your introduction of the brainstorming process and rules. More information about that would be helpful.

You seem to have a good group of ideas. I look forward to seeing what you come up with as we move ahead.

Regards, Julie

Ahoy Matey! The pirate-speak joke was a fun way to start your post! The description of the game would be unclear to a reader who is unfamiliar with the class, or brainstorming games. I like the idea of the scented, heat-activated coasters! I can easily see my mom buying a few sets of those! Unless I am missing something though, your idea list seems to be short by one. You may want to upload another for future posts as a reference. Listing the credited name below each image is a good idea, makes the post look more formal.

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This page contains a single entry by neuma278 published on November 18, 2013 10:51 AM.

An Ode to Holiday Decorations was the previous entry in this blog.

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