I was recently inspired by a tweet where a Grade 4 class was asked what they would like to learn.
On my weekends the inevitable question arose from my six year old daughter “Mummy, what can we do?”. For the first time in a while I had a well planned answer for her. She had asked recently twice what it is that I did as a job and I very loosely explained it but decided that this was the prime opportunity to kill three birds with one stone – give her a good understand of some of what I do, fill up an hour of her time and find out what she would like to learn.
As an early concluding statement I was very happy with the results.
For those interested here are the steps that I took:
- Gave her five minutes to brainstorm things that she wanted to learn. I framed this as either physical, practical or research (ie find out more about).
- Because I wanted her to work on her writing I asked her to write them up one per post it note. I also added one card to cover what I do for a living, but the exercise itself covers off some of this.
- Then I asked her to prioritise them (shot A)
- After that they were sized in minutes (shot B of the outcomes). I found this incredibly funny and really hard to restrain my opinion on how long they would take – I wanted to timebox myself to her times and not mine. I found it interesting where the item I added was in her priority.
- Then we agreed that we would stick to one hour. We put the headers up for backl
og, in progress and done. Then we began our hour.
- Before we started each card (ie before the timer started on it) we defined exactly what we wanted covered in it through a conversation.
- Once this was clear we moved the card into in progress which was a signal to start the timer.
- If we reached the end of the card’s estimated time I would ask the question if we were done against our criteria or if she wanted to spend more time on it. Only on one occassion did we reach the end of the timebox and she wanted to extend it. I then asked her what she wanted to de-scope and she chose what to remove from the backlog in order to extend that card’s time. In three instances we were shorter than the cards estimate, we probably could have pulled back in the one we cancelled because of this but her attention span was starting to wane at the 55 minute mark and I cut the one hour timebox off early.
- When the card was finished it was moved into done and any deviations to the actuals written down.
So take a look at some of the other shots of work in progress and some of the outcomes. Lastly there is a mid sprint opinion on how the exercise was going.