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Discover the Best Alternatives to Scale Scrum for Educational Systems

Discover the Best Alternatives to Scale Scrum for Educational Systems

Scrum has been part of many companies, industries, and project management. But, some areas are also using it to prevent and get better performances from its professionals, such as educational systems.

It doesn’t matter if they are teachers from elementary schools or professors from high-standard college courses.

Good project management tools are needed both for group work and for subjects that follow the project-based education method. From this need, Eduscrum emerged, the Scrum applied to the educational context.

In this article, you will how scaling scrum is important in the promotion of the educational system, from elementary school until graduation.

Predictable scenario

The traditional school was formed at the beginning of the 20th century, at a time of standardization of rituals that would attend to the operation of mass production in the industry.

The predictability of these patterns was important to maintain control and avoid improvisation. And, unfortunately, those who did not fit the established pattern had to withdraw from schools of educational systems.

Teachers, managers, and course coordinators need to select, organize and balance what is intended to be built with the students.

Virtual learning environments use resources like blogs, wiki, comments, web-forum, nano-learning, video-based learning, digital game-based learning, QR codes, and messaging.

The experience, identified as significant, must be constantly applied, through feedback or evaluation rubrics. Both from the teacher to the students and from the students to the teacher.

The leadership of Agile methodologies 

The fact is that agile methodologies allow the student to occupy the position of the protagonist of their own learning.

They give you the ability to access information, connect with people, make decisions and learn, anytime and anywhere, based on frequent and punctual learning and assessment cycles (checklist, for example).

The idea is to share experiences, cases, problem-solving (hands-on, for example). This connection can be live, online, or recorded for on-demand access.

The possibility of making them in a maker space, laboratory, or professional environment allows for immersion.

And they constitute, in the action space, inspiration through the development of competencies, skills, and attitudes that can be applied throughout life (in research, business, society, and technology environments).

What is Eduscrum?

Eduscrum was born from Scrum, that is, a set of practices that enable workgroups to be able to present results in a short period of time. The main practices of the Scrum methodology are:

Sprint Planning

Planning the activities during a period of 2 to 4 weeks, where each cycle is a Sprint.

Sprint Review

Presentation of the work during a given Sprint, with a discussion about successes, errors, and possible improvements to the process, focusing on the product produced.

Retrospective:

Identification of improvement actions in the next Sprint, focusing on the process itself.

Daily Scrum:

Daily meetings of a maximum of 15 minutes in which each member tells the group how their activities are going and the difficulties they are facing.

Product Backlog:

project task list.

Sprint Backlog:

a subset of tasks that must be performed in a Sprint.

Kanban:

activity chart for monitoring tasks.

Each working group is called a Team. There are two leadership roles in Scrum groups, which can be performed by different people. The Product Owner, which can be translated as “product owner”, is the one who is in contact with the customer and knows exactly what needs to Be done. And the Scrum Master, responsible for helping the Product Owner ensure Scrum principles and keep the Team focused.

Eduscrum is a way to find an adaptation of Scrum to the classroom context, obtaining benefits for both school dynamics and student development.

There are some adaptations to the Scrum framework, adjusting the terms to a gamification format:

  • Sprint turns into Phases
  • History becomes Mission.
  • Sprint Planning becomes a Planning Meeting.
  • Sprint Review becomes a Review Meeting.
  • The Scrum Master is the Teacher.
  • Project Owner disappears.
  • The Team Leader appears.
  • Time remains Time.

In this adaptation, the teacher plays the role of Scrum Master, monitoring the progress of projects and helping to seek resources and resolve doubts and conflicts. Students form teams of up to 4 people, electing a Team Leader for each development cycle.

This student has the role of supervising the progress of the work and reporting to the teacher. The process starts with the creation of the activity list and ends with the presentation of a product.

How to apply it in the classroom

After defining the list of all activities by the end of the project, each Team chooses a subgroup to write the Sprint Activity List, which lasts three to four weeks.

During each Sprint,  there are brief meetings, which can be daily or weekly, so that each group member can tell what they have worked on since the last meeting. What they will do until the next one, and if there are any impediments to their activities, which they all try to resolve together.

The team Leader approaches the teacher/profesor, whenever the group feels they need help. At the end of each sprint, the team must present a product evaluation, which is part of the final product.

As they work, each Team must create its activity board (Kanban), physically or virtually, reorganizing it every Sprint.

The distribution of tasks doesn’t go to the teacher or the Team Leader, as each component must choose the task they want to do in a proactive attitude. It is up to the teacher to always supervise the functioning of the groups so that the dynamic works.

The product produced during the entire process must provide the acquisition of knowledge and explain the achievement of students in learning.

Benefits of Eduscrum

The greatest benefit of this method is that collaborative learning requires the student to actively participate in the construction of their knowledge.

It becomes the main subject of his development, the protagonist of the learning process. The person responsible for his knowledge, and someone who regulates himself. Here, the teacher’s role is that of facilitator.

Eduscrum also promotes the ability to accept uncertainties and adapt to educational systems. It makes the student able to face unexpected problems and formulate creative solutions.

With the election of a different Team Leader in each cycle, the method also allows all members of the group to exercise a leadership role, training this ability.

Eduscrum has the potential to engage students in learning and train leading individuals.

Further possibilities

Some other common Scrum practices you can incorporate. A retrospective after completing all the backlogs, trying to identify what were the hits, the mistakes.

Another aspect would be, at the beginning of each meeting that takes place on the day of class. Also, to have a meeting in which the team will recap if there were any doubts or any curiosity.

In addition, each will be able to talk about their goals for that day regarding their accomplishments.

An efficient way that brings good results is through educational systems. However, it is possible to use principles to select whether or not a method is worth investigating.

One of the most important principles is to give students autonomy to become students. Also, be responsible for their own learning, working as a team, choosing what to study in a given context.

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