This post will show you how to write a journal entry for your Innovation Fair.
Each journal entry should be typed, printed off and signed by each member of a group. Remember to only sign off on journal entries if you concur with the writings your peer has created. If a student works as an individual, signing the entry is not required. Each entry should have the following headings written in bold. You may cut and paste the headings below for each entry.
The Name of your innovation may change as your project changes. Be sure to update it.
The Hours Worked/Date will help you keep track of how much you have worked on the project.
The Witnessed by is necessary so that someone else is confirming your innovation process.
The Notes section will be the main section of each entry. Here you will describe what work you’ve done on your project. You can summarize the work you’ve done, list new questions that have come up, identify problems, or mention what your project plans are for the upcoming week. If you’re in a group you may also include what you have contributed to the group’s progress since your last entry and what you plan to contribute before your next entry. Your journal is your recording of the story of your innovation process, which includes your failures. Remember, “fail often in order to succeed sooner.” Since you are typing your entry, you can also include links to resources, patents, pictures, or anything else that you’ve run across that has helped your innovation process.
The Drawing/Photos section is for you to post visual evidence of your progress. You can add screenshots of images you find on the web or pictures you’ve taken of your invention in various stages of completion. You can also take digital photos of any drawings and add those. Save these images because any images you collect will be useful for your presentations as well. If you do a thorough job on your journal entries, the slides for your presentation will be much easier to pull together later on.
See below for an example of a journal entry.
Innovation Name: Stuffed Animal Wake-Up System
Hours Worked/Date: 1-3pm on January 18th and 7-9:30pm on January 24th
Witnessed by: Ms. Takes
I came up with the idea to innovate my alarm clock by combing a stuffed animal and an alarm clock so that I can sleep with my alarm and it would wake me up. First, I needed to do some research to see if it already existed. I found something similar. I went to Google Patent Search and found that a stuffed bear clock has already been designed, as well as a pillow with an alarm clock. These will give me a good idea on how to design my innovation.
Drawing of the Stuffed Animal Clock from its patent proposal.
The pillow with the alarm clock patent specifically mentions that it can be adapted to stuffed animals so I will have to change my idea in some way. I brainstormed a couple of new ideas like a stuffed animal alarm that doesn’t turn off until you hug it, or one that talks and tells you what you have scheduled for the day, or one that’s also your phone charger. I decided to change my idea to a stuffed animal alarm and phone charger. I google searched “stuffed animal phone charger” and found an Instructable that described how to make one. The procedure involves some electrical wiring and sewing so I will need to either teach myself how to do those things or find someone to help me. I think I will start by making a small prototype following these instructions and then see how I can improve or expand the design.
The stuffed animal I will use in my first prototype.