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The Ocean Connection: Problem Framing

Focusing on ‘Problem Framing’, our third session at Lianhua Primary was a total hit! It was amazing to see how the students stretched their creativity and imagination to understand the complex task they were dealing with. This time, we started off with Nathalia, who painted a general picture of the Lionfish invasion of the Atlantic Coast and shared about her experiences as a diver in Colombia, where she took part in a diving expedition to kill this invasive species. The objective of her sharing was to show them how some solutions seemed to be addressing the problem, but actually they only focused at a symptom of the problem.


Then it got real – it was time for them to bring their own stories into the picture. The first step was to individually come up with a story about one thing each student cared about, related to marine environments. After sharing them in their groups and identifying the common values each story shared, they formed a group story of “us”. And have you heard about the Iceberg? Well, this time our students did! Being introduced to this way of problem framing where symptoms and deeper causes are detected, each group dissected their story of “us” into the deeper causes behind their issue. This part was indeed the most challenging, but it was also when their creativity and knowledge on marine environments wandered freely around the classroom.


Finally, it was time to identify the characters of their own stories: who are they, what’s their role, what’s their motivation, and what’s the relationship between each other? Yes – they came up with a whole storyworld of their iceberg problem framing! As we look ahead, the kids will be referring to their problem framing map to conduct interviews and other methods of investigation to truly figure out what’s their mission in the marine conservation landscape. What if you end up being one of their interviewees – that would be incredible!


© The Maju Collective x Our Seas, Our Legacy



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