A simple, interactive, and collaborative game to experience at a high-level the ceremonies and common practices of Scrum through simulating a sprint.

This game has been used as one part of a longer session focused on learning about Scrum. Prior to playing this game, the team has read the Scrum Guide, been given an overview of Scrum methodology, and has been exposed through various other activities to the Scrum roles and Scrum ceremonies. This game is used to experiment with how to put what they’ve learned into practice!

Timing30 – 45 minutes


A public Trello board with column headers pre-defined – “Backlog”, “Sprint Plan/ To-Do”, “In Progress”, “Done”

Note: You could instead use a wall to create a physical board in the room and team can populate with sticky notes if all participants are in-person and if you prefer this approach to a digital board.


1.    Have the team decide who will play each of the Scrum roles for the game – Product Owner, Scrum Master, Delivery Team, Stakeholder/s

2.    Backlog Refinement

  • Goal for everyone to work together to quickly create a backlog
  • Facilitator asks – What are the potential user stories for someone who needs to get themselves ready for work in the morning?
  • These items get added as cards in the “Backlog” on the Trello
  • Team asked to size each item (S, M, L or Fibonacci) and add that to the card as well

3.    Sprint Planning

  • Identify the Sprint Goal: Work from home day
  • Have the team pull in the stories that would meet that sprint goal into their “Sprint Plan/ To-Do” on the Trello

4.    Sprint

  • Team assigns themselves to items, acts out the items they assign to themselves (like charades), and moves the cards across the board

5.    Sprint Review

  • Product Owner shares an overview of what the team has completed to the Stakeholder/s
  • Team has option to demo what they’ve done

6.    Sprint Retrospective

  • Team, SM & PO brainstorm a couple things that went well & what they want to do differently next time

7.    Sprint Planning

  • Identify the Sprint 2 Goal: Go to office for work & have an important presentation
  • Have the team pull in the stories that would meet that sprint goal into their “Sprint Plan/ To-Do” on the Trello

8.    Debrief

Learning Points:

  1. Which parts were easy/ hard to remember from what we learned prior to the game?
  2. What came to you easily? What did you find difficult?
  3. How did the sprint goal help focus the team & impact what stories get pulled into the sprint?
  4. How will this relate to our day-to-day?
  5. What is something you’ll remember and apply in future?

6 thoughts on “Sprint Simulation – Scrum Practice Game

  1. Amazing how some teams need 3 or 4 rounds of stand ups to get the hang of it and know what is important to talk about. More detail than working on it please? Need help, then ask. I would have things not move for several rounds. I am blocked again!

    1. Hi Mary! You are so right that stand ups (or any part of Scrum) can be a challenge for teams who are not used to doing it. It’s important to have a patient Scrum Master and/or teammates to reiterate the reason why the team is having stand ups, give feedback so everyone understands what is useful/not useful to share in the meeting, and help everyone on the team see the value stand ups provide. Like many things with agile, it is a mindset shift that can take a little time & practice. 🙂

  2. Hi Angela! In the past, I’ve used ‘getting ready for a work day’ as the faux project. The user stories the teams come with are things like “As an employee I want to drink coffee so that I can be alert”, “As an employee I want to brush my hair so that I look presentable”, and “As an employee I want to check the weather on my phone so that I know how to appropriately dress for the day.”

    Anything general that your team can relate to could work. Some other ideas – building a house, cooking dinner for a loved one, or preparing for a vacation.

    Good luck! I’d love to hear feedback from you & your team if you try it out!

  3. Hi Lucia! I’d love to hear how it goes when you try it out. The teams I’ve used this with have enjoyed it, and I found it led to practical discussions that prepared them to try Scrum with their actual work. I’d appreciate any feedback you have to improve the game.

  4. Hi!

    Thank you for the activity — can you please tell me what we are scrummiing ON? I’m afraid I need some assistance coming up with fun faux-project ideas.

  5. Thanks for this one! I find it perfect for a follow up after teaching what Scrum is all about. Gonna try it in a couple of weeks.

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