Making a peanut butter and jelly sandwich is easy, even without a recipe. After all, all you have to do is take peanut butter, jelly and bread and put it together, right?
Students taking part in the Southeast STEM summer program at SHS were told on July 7, 2016 to write a list of directions for how to make the sandwich, as if you were writing it for somebody who had never made one (like an alien).
After writing their directions, students then followed their directions perfectly. If they said “add peanut butter” instead of “use a knife to spread out the peanut better”, they had to use their hands.
Needless to say, students learned that precise directions are critical for the user experience.
Photos courtesy of Stephanie Combs.