Interview with Mark Postema, an enthusiastic teacher and eduScrum trainer.

What is eduScrum about? 

eduScrum is about giving ownership over the learning process to the learners, enhancing the 21st century skills like cooperation, creativity, critical thinking and creativity. It allows the learners to be behind the steering wheel instead of sitting in the back seat. 

What fascinates you about it? 

Most fascinating for me is how learners keep surprising me when they are provided with that freedom and ownership over the process. It makes such a big difference in terms of motivation, joy and results. 

For whom is the method intended? 

The method is intended for wherever the learning is happening. From early childhood to adult learning. It doesn’t matter. 

How long have you been working with the eduScrum methodology? 

I started using it in 2017 when I moved from the Netherlands to the Czech Republic and since 2019 I’m an eduScrum trainer and responsible for eduScrum in the Czech Republic. 

Please, give us some examples of activities we can use the eduScrum for.. 

I work partly in a state school in Trutnov. I use eduScrum to teach physics to the 9th class in English. We realize 4 projects a year on the topics of Nuclear Power, Electricity, Space and Optics. 

I also apply it in courses I give to after graduate students in a private language school. Great thing about it is, that we don’t have a fixed curriculum as I have in the state school. So together with my students, we design their education based on their needs and interests. 

Is it complicated to use eduScrum in practice? 

Well, eduScrum as a framework is not complicated. Some tools are provided, but just like in many other forms, it’s not about the tool itself. It’s about the mindset that is behind it. It’s about really trusting the learners and the process. That also means letting go of certain habits that we are very much used to in education. So it’s easy to learn a few tricks and tools, but the challenge is to embrace the mindset while applying it. That’s when eduScrum really becomes powerful. 

Is it realistic to use the eduScrum method in real life (not just in the educational process)? 

Isn’t real life an educational process itself? It’s about figuring out what you want to learn, why and from there to find a way how to get there. The tools and techniques we use for that are definitely usable outside an educational environment. I even applied a lot of these techniques in managing a huge reconstruction of the apartment I live in now with my family. 😉 

Why should youth workers and teachers attend training on eduScrum?

I believe eduScrum is very much suitable for non-formal education, maybe even more than for formal education. The beauty of non-formal education is that it’s really all about the learner. Everything is open. eduScrum is not closing that openness. It’s providing a structure to support the learning and coach the learning process. It helps the learning to structure, to plan, to adapt and to be aware of the progress. It also provides a clear oversight so that the coach can support the learners effectively. 

More information about the training course on eduScrum in youth work (26th – 29th August 2021) is on ANEV website.

Mark was interviewed by Martina Vokrouhlíková.

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