Creative Drinks Afternoon


Creative Drinks Afternoon

…a gathering of colleagues and other interested folk who responded to my email invitation.

Invite via email

Invite via email

I was aware of shortcomings regarding timeframe and location, however, decided to proceed with the event rather than accept the extension as a ‘bird in the hand is worth two in the bush’ … commitments are mounting. I shopped and cooked … for the small number [4] who replied. It became a case of the loaves and the fishes, or more aptly – needing to turn water into wine! As it transpired, of those who accepted, half managed to attend. [Unfortunately, only one ‘outsider’ attended.].  I was surprised: In total, fourteen people arrived and participated. Despite the following images, we did enjoy the discussion!



I had a loose agenda/plan to assist in maintaining focus:

  1. Introduction from me [repeated twice as other people arrived]
  2. Word ‘splash’ or word phrase ‘splash’ – creativity, ‘creative culture’, ‘design thinking’, ‘creative coffee mornings’, ‘meet ups’, ‘the third teacher’, ‘teach-meets
  3. Engage in a marshmallow challenge [didn’t get to have the challenge]



  1. Most of the participants have a negative perception of their own design capacity, whilst at the same time sharing how they reorganise systems and layouts [e.g.  retail shops and restaurants] in their mind
  2. Discussion around ‘creative culture’ was animated – most seeking, but not knowing how to develop – ideas were shared from those who participate in artistic endeavours outside of their workplace
  3. Most interested in ‘design thinking’ especially around the concept of ‘walking in someone else’s shoes
  4. ‘The third teacher’ drew the most discussion – since all participants’ workplaces are schools [though not all participants were teachers] – discussion around the outdoor space as ‘the third teacher’ [at my workplace the outdoor space for kindergarten students requires attention!]
  5. Overwhelming positive response to the afternoon – Why? Intrigued? Voluntary participation?
  6. Where to next? Options/suggestions –
    1. Positive suggestion and reaction from participants to meet again – maybe once per term
    2. At this stage the line of communication will not be Twitter because only three participants have Twitter accounts and they were unsure of passwords etc.
    3. Most participants have active Facebook accounts, therefore creating a Facebook page/group is an option.
    4. Meeting outside our school offers neutrality and openness – suggestion of a local ‘slow food’ cafe. Discussed the ying and yang: it’s a creative space, small and noisy, without the ability to make a booking
    5. ‘Where to next’ for me personally –
      1. Increased desire to attend a ‘Creative Coffee Morning’ in Sydney to supplement my following their Tweets and Facebook posts;
      2. Investigate local ‘Meet Up’ groups – I realise they are motivating after being an observer at a Meet Up last year.
...a thought

…a thought

I have thoroughly enjoyed reading and absorbing the diversity generated by this activity amongst the #INF536s….more to come, I suspect! At this stage I have responded to

Heather –

Lisa –

Margaret –

Monique –

Jim –

Matt –

Yvette –

About plee

I am a Teacher Librarian and Learning Technologies Co-ordinator at a Catholic Primary School in Sydney's Hills District.
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10 Responses to Creative Drinks Afternoon

  1. Margaret Simkin says:

    What an amazing turn up from 4 replies. I hope you get to meet again. I think it is much easier to leap into discussion if you understand the process, and your group have now experienced the process.
    Despite being a bit wary at first, this whole concept has really grown on me – it’s value seems almost limitless. If an ongoing group of core personnel continued the session into the future, others could drop in or drop out and all would be energised.
    I find a quick conversation in the corridor with a person who is passionate about what they do lasts me for days.

    • plee says:

      Yes, it was rewarding, and I plan to meet up again. To have the ‘outside eyes’ is valuable too – I hope to have more next time.

  2. Jim Thomas says:


    Are you sure you want to switch to the creative coffee mornings instead of the creative drinks afternoon? Looks like you put together a nice event, and I enjoyed the video. I’m curious about what software you used to create the folding pages in your video.

    Well done,

    • plee says:

      We did have an enjoyable afternoon with several people staying for over two hours. ‘Creative drinks afternoon’ certainly gave the event a different atmosphere. I have a few ideas rolling around in my head for the next one…

      The slideshow/video was created using iPhoto. Easy.

  3. moniquemcqueen says:

    Hi Patricia,
    So nice to see your community supporting this event. I liked your slideshow too – a great capture of the afternoon. I was a little hesitant about organising this type of event, but quite enjoyed it too. I have already had some people ask if its going to be a regular event – I do think some people look for this type of conversation. I had a Sunday coffee morning, but I think I’d like to try a bar or boutique beer place next.

    • plee says:

      I agree with your comment about hesitancy – so out of my comfort zone. However, the success and the successes of our group has given me further encouragement to continue with creative coffee/beverage events!

  4. says:

    I love your planned agenda and the idea of using the marshmallow challenge. What a great icebreaker if the conversation didn’t get going straight away! Sounds like you didn’t need it, and that you had a very constructive afternoon!

    • plee says:

      Interesting how most of the creative coffee events managed conversation with little encouragement from the facilitators – seems like people are generally interested in creativity.

  5. Ronnie says:

    It looked liked great fun Patricia, food and drink does certainly seem to be a common ‘lure’. I did a group of young Mum’s and we had similar perceptions of their design capacity, until we dug back into our own childhood and thought about how kids are natural prototyper’s. I’m glad you had the ‘third teacher’ come up too – we spoke a lot about it – how the kindy kids (and younger) have great confidence in trying stuff on their own in their environment, but we then seem to lose that capacity as the ‘real’ teacher environment takes over. Keen to see how it progresses!

    • plee says:

      …speaking of ‘The third Teacher’ – I am reading the book. An engaging text – shall leave it ‘lying’ around when I have finished. Can dip into it and start a conversation…

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