Age group: 
Creative Arts

Classroom unit


Students explore the process of being innovative. Whether inventing a new product or service or modifying an existing one by adding an "inventive step" - thinking innovatively means looking at current environments, products or problems through a different lens- and coming up with new ideas. 

Being innovative can mean:

  • Inventing a new product or service
  • Modifying an existing invention with an "inventive step"
  • Delivering a new solution to an existing problem or simply,
  • Finding a way better way or more efficient way of completing a task.  

In this module, students are encouraged think creatively, develop a scientific methodology before approaching this task and consider how intellectual property fits with the innovation cycle.

A case study featuring secondary students who have invented a successful product is contained within this module. These students have 'Space Saver Spacer' for asthmatics - a product that has vastly improved the lives of many suffers of asthma and saved lives.

The featured case study showcases their approach to innovation and acts as inspirational story to other young people.

At the same time, this resource helps students become more empathetic toward sufferers of asthma, which is a common ailment in our society.

  • Science - the scientific method
  • Health - the impact of asthma
  • Civics and Citizenship  
  • SRC -  dealing with social issues
  • Values Education

Learning Objectives

Students will be able to:

  • Understand the scientific approach to developing a solution
  • Develop strategies for dealing with school-related social issues (for example, finding new approaches to address important issues such as bullying)
  • Appreciate the legal protections are available and appropriate for some innovations - so that inventors can claim exclusive ownership of an idea
  • Empathise with peers who have to manage asthma
  • Formal protection for ideas are available through Trade Marks, Patents, Plant Breeder's rights and Design registration.

Curriculum Area/s: 

  • Science - the scientific method
  • Health - the impact of asthma
  • Civics and Citizenship  
  • SRC -  dealing with social issues
  • Values Education


Duration: 1-2 x 45 minute lessons

Teacher Prep Time: 5 minutes

Materials Required: Online, smart board or hard copies of Worksheets 1-9


1. Students look at Worksheet 1.

Students discuss the example of a five year old boy and his invention. Discuss how the product he has invented.  Explain that the focus of this unit is on understanding how we can all think more innovatively and improve society.

2. Students brainstorm the stages involved in being innovative and compile a preliminary list of how they would approach this task.

3. Students read through Worksheet 2.

Students brainstorm their specific suggestions on ways they would improve the spacer product.

4. Students look at the film clip referred to on Worksheet 3. 

Students discuss whether their suggestions have been addressed by the students who have created the new spacer product.

5. Students now understand the meaning of the relevant IP terms Patents, Trade Marks and Designs, and fill in a mock trade mark  applications and complete the registration check list (what kinds names exactly can be registered as product names). (Worksheets 5-6)

6. Students now work in small groups to create a Trade Mark name, and a registered design for the spacer, and 'register' these on the mock forms.

7. Market research - Students now develop a strategy for testing their ideas with appropriate people - such as peers with asthma, and parents who are likely to be involved in the purchase of a spacer.

8. Students reflect on the nature of invention and the different forms these can take.


worksheet_1._what_are_the_stages_in_invention_or_innovation.pdf PDF in PDF format [181.62 KB]181.62 KB
worksheet_2._invention_case_study.pdf PDF in PDF format [297.99 KB]297.99 KB
worksheet_3._patents_trade_marks_design_registration_marketing.pdf PDF in PDF format [190.98 KB]190.98 KB
worksheet_4._patents.pdf PDF in PDF format [164.17 KB]164.17 KB
worksheet_5._trade_marks.pdf PDF in PDF format [174.87 KB]174.87 KB
worksheet_6._designs.pdf PDF in PDF format [170.74 KB]170.74 KB
worksheet_9._stages_in_innovation.pdf PDF in PDF format [181.29 KB]181.29 KB
Last updated: 
Saturday, November 23, 2013