Managing a school science fair project like an IT project
Our son is in middle school, and like many other middle school students in the United States, he was tasked with creating a school science project. I remember doing my own science experiments for science projects when I was a kid, and they could be quite stressful! You were given the daunting task of coming up with a topic for a science experiment at the beginning of the fall term, and right around Christmastime, you were expected to hand in a full-finished science project, complete with a tri-fold or bristol board display.
Things have changed, however, and nowadays kids are given much better resources to create their science projects. This is a very good thing – for students, and also for their stressed-out parents!
I’ve written two posts about our experiences with our son’s science project:
- How our son created a prototype of what his eventual science project display would look like
- How our son managed his science project like an actual Information Technology (IT) project.
It was interesting to me how these school science projects were organized much like the projects that I have managed during my project management career – with proper schedules and timelines, milestones, resources and materials lists, and deliverables. I hadn’t thought about it before, but doesn’t this make perfect sense? Science projects are, after all, projects. Students should manage them as such! In this way, not only they are learning about science, but also about proper project management techniques – skills that can help them in any subject later in their educational or professional careers.