This is the multi-team airplane game that we use to introduce Agile through games.
Also, it is great fun when I rip the first plane (for not passing acceptance criteria). The collective gasp is always entertaining. I’ve also had people actually ask “You mean they have to fly?!”. Students usually focus too deeply on the mechanics of what’s in front of them that these other big picture concerns completely escape them… until the first acceptance test that is.
The downloads are below for intro slides, airplanes I use, and a pdf of the instructor notes. The next section contains the instructor notes, so that readers can understand how the game works.
Agile Airplane Game – Instructor Notes
Step 0: Materials Prep
- Print 1 copy of each airplane
- Prepare financials chart ($ on vertical, sprints on horizontal)
- Prepare note cards for any “helpers” to take responsibility for parts of facilitation
Step 1: Set the stage
Explain that air shows have become popular spectator events. The demand for planes has increased significantly. Everyone here is part of the “Agile Aviation Company”.
Step 2: Starting details
- Air shows across the country have placed orders for planes, we need to fulfill them.
- Economics: The company has a burn rate of $12 per team, and starts with $40 per team in the bank. Updates are made at the end of each Sprint.
- Pass out supplies (paper, scissors, tape, colored markers)
- Pass out (1 beginner, 1 intermediate) plans to each team – “your initial setup”
- Color code plans and planes (based on available colors) – a stripe is fine
Step 3: First Order, Begin Sprinting
- Every complete delivery of (15 Beginner, 10 Intermediate) planes will be paid $20.
- Give team 1 minute to plan Sprint
- Run Sprint for 4 minutes
Step 4: End of Sprint 1
- Demo to Customer (Instructors)
- Only tell teams about acceptance criteria if/when they ask
- Reject planes (by spectacularly ripping them) that don’t meet acceptance criteria
- Group batches of “done done” planes into orders
- Update financial chart for Sprint 1 based on any completed orders and burn rate
Step 5: Run Sprint 2
- Give teams 1 minute to reflect and plan
- run Sprint 2 for 4 minutes
Step 6: Run Sprint 3
Step 7: Safety Issue, Run Sprint 4
- Pull one Basic plan out (safety issues found in design) – pull the one with most in stock
Step 8: High Value/High Risk, Run Sprint 5
- Pass out (1 advanced) plan to each team
- Offer new order type: $10 for 4 Advanced Planes
Notes for instructors/helpers:
All folds line up with 3mm tolerance. (Don’t be too stringent).
Each plane if properly color coded.
Each plane is folded properly (no inverted folds, …)
Must fly across 6 foot (2 meter) platform (tables or chairs)
Setup a stable surface (tables or chairs) about 2m (6ft) wide for the planes to fly over.
At the end of each Sprint, after plane acceptance, update the financial chart:
- modify total by: ($ from Completed orders) – $12 X (# of teams)
Introduction Slides: AgileAirplaneGame.pdf
Instructor Notes: AgileAirplaneGame-InstructorNotes.pdf
Paper Airplanes I Use: PaperAirplanes.zip
(paper airplanes are from http://www.funpaperairplanes.com/Plane%20Downloads.html)