Design Your Own Remote

Objective: Students will be exposed to ergonomics and will use critical thinking and drawing skills.
Resources: Teacher: remote controls for TV and other electronic devices. Student: pencil, paper.

1. Procedure: Discuss being aware how our bodies adapt to manufactured objects: chairs, tables, etc.
2. Assign students to examine a remote control at home, drawing a picture of it as well as thinking about how they would change it.
3. The next day in class, discuss several different remote controls, using your own as examples.
4. Have students visualize their own remotes, with the help of their drawings, if necessary, and with their eyes straight ahead, pretend using the remote to raise and lower volume, change channels, and turn TV on and off.
5. Ask if they like the placement of the buttons.
6. Have students redesign the remote to better fit their hands or to be easier to use without looking.

Variations/Options: Examine other items like appliances, automobiles or ball point pens for design flaws and redesign.