As clear as mud: designs for washing young children

October 27th, 2013

Extracts from the design brief 

… not far away, young children in Australia are not having a bath; there are too many houses with no proper place for young children to be washed. Not being washed causes chronic discomfort and allows development of skin infections, as well as ear, nose & throat infections, which can lead to permanent lung, eye, ear, even kidney, damage. How can we, as beginning designers, develop responses to the problem of washing young children?

We are asked to develop and communicate a prototype design for a place for washing young children in privacy, with suitable ‘health hardware’. This detail design fulfils a need which endures today in our wealthy country, and in much of the rest of the world.

Running concurrently with the considered design brief prepared by University staff, are short sharp interactive design problems, based on the washing theme.

The first design problem was washing dirty hands – provided by dipping hands in a bucket full of mud.

 Handswash Uo N 17.10.13 Photo 1

Each design group were given a limited range of materials, a time limit (this was reduced shortly before testing to make the challenge more difficult) and the criteria for design assessment – paper towels to detect any remaining dirt.

Prizes were awarded and the overall results were very impressive.

 Photo 2

Keep watching the website for the results of the main design program.