Beyond words – Learning journey of a 14-year-old musical talent by Anna

The creation of the learning process was based on design thinking. You can find the whole process visualized on the Miro board here. To explain that better I would like to present the key concepts connected to each of the steps:


Ideate and empathize

I tried to design an engaging and exciting learning experience for my 14- year- old sister, Lili. My hypothesis was that it can be difficult as a teenager to express herself in a creative and authentic way. Lili is extremely talented in music (plays the guitar, the ukulele, the piano, and the drums), but she barely shows her skills other than to her family. Lately, she’s been experimenting with music composition as well as improvisations on her guitar. I also recognized that it’s gaining more importance in Lili’s life to fine-tune her style as time progresses. 



I wished to develop her abilities and broaden her perspective to communicate in different modalities (through words, music, images) and parallel to that broaden her digital skillset, so she would have more opportunities to share her feelings. 


Prototype and Test

A nearly one-day learning journey was designed which comprised several elements and the goal was to create with Lili her first single album. I thought if we would complete together these assignments which are essential to creating an album, Lili could practice those skills which I mentioned above. 

Some family members were also involved to contribute to the program: my brother as the facilitator of one of the workshops as well as my father as a technological expert. I was the facilitator that held the whole process together and the guide of Lili too. I would like to describe the steps of the day in a few sentences: 

  • Introduction of the day- have an overview and provide room for questions or suggestions 
  • Kick-off session- where we set the goals, and explored the possible impediments and resources 
  • Mapping Lili’s musical influencers and have an association about the common points of them (using the distance, and the size of the pictures to represent the relationship between them and Lili) 
  • Mapping the cover pictures of those album’s which Lili likes and then finding common patterns in them 
  • Creating a cover photo for her single (1,5 h workshop facilitated by my brother, Andris) 
  • Recording and editing one of Lili’s songs with the help of our father, who also provided a technical explanation of the used tools (1,5h workshop)
  • Finding a streaming platform and uploading the music, and the cover photo there
  • Presenting the result, and reflecting together on the experiences

+1 Ordering pizza to celebrate 🙂



You can find Lili’s first single’s cover, and the link of her soundtrack here. She has already got one follower from the US :). 



This process worked well for Lili, and if we would continue I would like to refine the workshops and prepare more those contributors who weren’t involved so much in the designing phase of the process.

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  1. This is so cool! I love the creativity of matching the process with the situation, as well as the one your sister shows in her first single! It’s a really nice tune and she should definitely play/record more!

  2. Really enjoyed Lili’s composition. What a great example of collaboration and learning by doing. It all resonates with a book I was just reading thirty minutes ago–The Power of Mindful Learning. You designed a perfect learning environment. Thanks.

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