How to Run Kata in the Classroom

If you’re interested in learning how to think scientifically I strongly recommend the Kata in the Classroom (KiC) exercise.

I’ve personally run a number of KiC workshops.  On one end of the spectrum I’ve run workshops for children as young as 7-years-old.  And on the other end I’ve conducted workshops for more than 200 medical professionals in one giant ballroom.  I won’t tell you which group performed the best… I’ve been sworn to secrecy!

But, in all seriousness, this exercise is good.  Real good.  With this said, I have personally made some “tweaks” to the way I run it.  Specifically, I now add in dedicated “reflection time” after each round where they can only reflect… no planning next steps.  I even assign someone at each table to be the “Reflection Police Officer” since folks always want to plan their next steps before reflecting on what they learned from the last experiment.  But, other than that, I keep everything as originally designed.

Now, if you want help running the workshop we can definitely help you.  Just shoot me a note.  But, if you’re interested in doing it on your own we’ve also got you covered at no cost.  Yep, free.

We’ve constructed a dedicated Toyota Kata landing page where you can, among many other things, watch Mike Rother conduct a live KiC workshop.  We then took this same video and added in prompts for online learner to participate as if you were there.  Both videos are on the kata landing page.  You’ll also find all sorts of other kata goodies on this page like blog articles, podcasts, and links out to other kata related sites.  It really is a pretty sweet landing page we hope you bookmark.

Finally, if you know of any teachers out there please, please, please forward this article to them.  Our children are the future and what a future we’ll have if we have a bunch of scientific thinkers running the world!

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