These are suggestions for organizing your team’s time. Please note that the steps overlap so more than one step may occur at a meeting.
Step 1. Read the Problem (First 2-3 meetings, As needed after)
Go through each section of the problem
Make sure each participant understands what is required
General ideas are OK, but don’t focus on Brainstorming solutions yet
Understand how each of the parts interact
Step 2. Brainstorm Possible Solutions (Meetings 2-5)
Generate lots of ideas (keep track of them)
Don’t evaluate them yet… just keep track of them
Break the problem down into manageable pieces
Encourage wild, creative solutions
Step 3. SCAMPER (Meetings 4-6)
Use the SCAMPER technique to come up with more ideas
Change the ideas, generate even more
Step 4. Evaluate Ideas (Meetings 4-6)
Which ideas does the team like best
Evaluate, but don’t criticize
Select a preliminary solution
Step 5. Determine Tasks & Timeline (Meetings 5-8)
What types of tasks, skills, props, contraptions, needed to complete this solution?
Who and how will they do these things?
Determine a basic time-line for completing the solution.
Continue to evaluate the solution and refine/revise as needed.
Do the items decided upon fit the problem specifications?
Step 6. Begin Construction (Meetings 6- )
Start building things and writing a script.
Revise/refine (continuously) and as necessary.
Step 7. Put it Together
As props, tasks are near completion, or are completed, test them out.
Continue to refine/revise.
Does the proposed solution fit the problem?
Step 8. Finish it Up and Practice (2-3 Meetings before Tournament)
Celebrate major accomplishments as they happen.
Test things out… do they work? Can they work better?
Practice the whole skit. Timing.
What happens if something goes wrong? Background tips over?