Distance Learning Resources

Design thinking has the capacity to benefit K-12 educators across any subject year after year through its emphasis on building collaboration, problem solving, and critical thinking skills. Using Cooper Hewitt’s world-renowned design collection, lessons developed by K-12 educators trained in design thinking, and many more museum resources, K-12 educators will find a wealth of strategies to help implement design thinking in their classrooms.

DESIGN LITERACY resources on smithsonian learning lab

To learn more about how to use design thinking in the K-12 classroom, take a look at Cooper Hewitt’s collections on the Smithsonian Learning Lab, a digital platform designed to inspire the discovery and creative use of rich digital materials—more than two million images, recordings, and texts from the Smithsonian’s 19 museums, 9 major research centers, the National Zoo, and more.


Cooper Hewitt is home to a diverse collection, spanning thirty centuries of historic and contemporary design. Explore the collection.


Cooper Hewitt works with designers from every field, discussing their work, the design process, and more. Watch hundreds of videos and presentations by designers here.


Cooper Hewitt’s Object of the Week blog features expert commentary on design objects from Cooper Hewitt’s permanent collection. Read more about Cooper Hewitt’s collection.


Cooper Hewitt’s Design Dictionary is a video series that vividly illustrates a wide variety of creative techniques. Covering everything from glassblowing to bobbin lacemaking to 3D printing, the series aims to demystify the making of objects by providing a highly visual, behind-the-scenes look into designers’ studios, schools and homes as they work. Each video in the fourteen-part series is under 3 minutes long and features a different designer or artisan hand-picked to demonstrate their skill in action. All videos were shot entirely on-location in New York City. Watch the video series.


Take a free half-hour online class on Skillshare with curators Andrea Lipps and Ellen Lupton, who discuss beauty as an inspiration for design and engage viewers in a design project to explore personal expressions of beauty. Take the class.