Tuesday, April 21, 2009

The scenarios and trip planning tool flows

Scenario – normal flow of actions

Mr Miller, a biology teacher, wants to organise a trip for his class. He first checks the topics in the curriculum for the next few weeks. The functionality of a waste water treatment plant would fit together with the induction of the new plant not far away. First Mr Miller browses the internet to find out some news and facts about the plant. On the plant’s website he hits on the email address of the public relations manager. He writes an inquiry, if it is the possible to visit the plant and to get a guided tour with 30 pupils. Three days later he receives a reply:

“Thanks for your interest in our waste water treatment plant. We would welcome to show you and your pupils around. Due to the fact that the interior of a waste water plant is a dangerous place, we must insist on having a signed consent form from every visitor or his legal guardian saying he knows the possible dangers and will follow the staff’s instruction. Enclosed please find our standard form. Furthermore we have to raise £2 admission fee per person for visiting our visitor park with nature trails.”

Mr Miller is happy about this positive reply and starts planning his trip. Mr Miller finds out, by using a route planner, that they will need about one hour to reach their destination. This time he could use to inform the pupils about the functionality of a waste water treatment plants and repeat the facts they had already heard about at school. The guided tour through the plant will take about 2 hours. After 3 hours of input he decides to give the children 20 minutes off to play near the plants’ park near the fish ponds. After this break the pupils are to follow the nature trail Mr Miller will choose for them and to complete a worksheet about the waste water treatment plant. Mr Miller estimates 1.5 hours for this part of the day. When the children have finished their task it would be time for lunch. The public relations manager had recommend that they eat in the plants’ staff canteen. Between 1pm and 2.30pm the manager would be free to answer the pupils’ questions. Mr Miller wants to benefit from this opportunity and tries to match his time plan to this appointment. He quickly discovers that he will not make it to finish the other tasks until 1pm. He writes to the public relations manager again and asks him if it is possible to reschedule their appointment to 2.30pm till 4pm. Fortunately the manager agrees to Mr Miller’s proposal, but he can only afford one hour, because Mr Miller’s enquiry was so late. Now they would arrive back at school between 5pm and 5.30pm. Mr Miller writes down his time plan on a piece of paper. After his idea for the trip he has to start the organisation. First he writes a letter to his headmaster to get an approval and maybe some extra budget for his trip. On the next day he gets feedback from the headmaster, who appreciates the trip to the waste water treatment plant and accredits £150 out of the school’s budget. Now Mr Miller can book the coach, recruit two more teachers and inform the parents. The coach will cost £5 per person, therefore the parents will have to pay the admission fee and the lunch. Mr Miller recommends £10 pocket money to cover all the expenses. It takes him one week to collect back the consent forms and the money from the pupils.

Meanwhile the three teachers meet to plan their lecture on the coach and the worksheet. They visit the plant one week in advance to get to know the public relations manager and the nature trails. They decide on one trail, make some notes and finish their preparations on the day before the trip.

On the day of the trip two children have forgotten the recommended raincoats and the pocket money. On the coach Mr Miller tells the pupils about the waste water plant and pictures are handed round. After the guided tour Mr Miller hands out some worksheets, which are to be completed on the nature trail. He had made some extra copies because pupils tend to lose or damage them outdoors.

After the trip the pupils have to copy their notes and findings on their PCs to prepare a presentation for the next day. Mr Miller has to put together an information leaflet for repeating and learning for tests.

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