Staying On Task During Project-Based Learning


– Managing a project is
something that, like group work, can’t just be accomplished easily. A lot of people think
that we’ll just create and do something and that’s a project. In order for it to be successful, any teacher that’s tried to do something that has a lot of
student choice and agency and takes multiple iterations, they know that there’s
a level of management that needs to be there for
students to be successful. [Students Chatting] – 20 minute work session, needs to have some structure to it. So I want to make sure
everybody’s got a meaningful job during these 20 minutes. Would each of you quickly
go around the table. There’s kind of this
constant communication going on between all the stakeholders. I have all my students use
SCRUM everyday in class when they’re working on a larger project and they’ve got a group
that they’re working with. We use a poster to visualize it. And the SCRUM meeting always
begins as three questions. Every member shares without
taking too much time, what have I accomplished
since the last meeting? What am I going to work on
between now and our next meeting? And what issues or concerns do I have about the project currently? And if you would take
one of the Post-it Notes, put your name on it, and
move it over to in progress. – So this is a SCRUM poster. It’s basically just a poster
that helps us visualize what we’re doing and
what needs to get done. – [Johnny] The posters typically have the defined product features. And then another column for things that still need to be done. – For our lander, we
have this section PBIs. It stands for project backlog interface. It’s pretty much just all the details and different design
choices that we want to put on the lander. A third column is the
tasks that are in progress. And when one of us actually
starts working on it, we put it in the in-progress section. Then maintaining is just
after you finished it, you know that it’s not just something that you’re gonna take off or something. It’s staying with the design. – So we can work on the
parachute and the airbags. – Okay, so out of the stabilizing legs, that we’re definitely keeping. Oh, there’s the reinforced
attachment posts. – And I dig. – I think that one of the nice things about having students
practice and get good at this SCRUM meeting is that
it gives students language to hold each other accountable, as one of the pitfalls of group work that I think most teachers could identify, that you’ve got one motivated student that’s gonna do all the work while the other students kind of suffer. Having the SCRUM poster
there is an easy tool for the group members themselves to really update and assign tasks that need to be done so
that a far share of labor can be spread out over the entire group. So I’m gonna interrupt. Just make sure that when
you guys own the task, what you’re gonna do, make
sure I see a Post-it Note with your name and the in progress before you start doing any work.

Leave a Reply