Play4Agile North America is a community unconference focused on helping people, teams & organisations to transform through games and playful approaches. Talking about us? Please tag it with #p4ana17

Other agile events

In this years closing circle, there were other agile events mentioned. The full list of global agile events is maintained here: http://www.hanoulle.be/2010/11/agile-conferences-calendar/

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Trying to figure out how to get to Play4Agile North America?

The conference is happening at:

YMCA Cedar Glen Outdoor Centre (click link for a map)
13300 11th Concession
Nobleton, ON
L0G 1N0

There are driving directions on our Locations page.

If you want to try to coordinate sharing a ride with other participants to get to the conference from Pearson Intl. Airport or downtown Toronto or wherever you’re landing in the area, leave your arrival details in a comment so that others can reply and you can make a plan!

We’ve just published the schedule for Play4Agile North America, including three presenters coming in to demonstrate some cool games.

Check it out at https://play4agilenorthamerica.com/schedule/
Note that we still have a few spots left so tell your friends to register now!

Bruce Scharlau, who teaches in the Computer Science department at the University of Aberdeen, has attended several Play4Agile conferences.  Bruce will be making the trek to Schomberg from Scotland to join us for Play4Agile in North America. In 2014, he wrote his Play4Agile Story to share what Play4Agile has meant to him:

I keep coming back because of the fun and the learning with these wonderful people in such a playful environment. And it’s good fun as there’s always something that I take home and use whether it be an idea, or games to use, or a better understanding of coaching and facilitation. I wrote about p4a2013 already.

  • How did Play4Agile make a difference in your life, your work and/or your community?

The takeaways of bringing in fun and games into the workplace and my teaching. This has helped make work more fun and keeps bringing new challenges because I’ve learned to keep moving out of my comfort zone as that’s where the magic is according to Pete’s drawing from last year.

We asked Bruce to say a few words about why he’ll be joining us for Play4Agile North America:

I’m coming to Canada to help get the North America edition off to a good start by making sure enough the the ‘Ruckersbach Spirit’ is there to see people have fun while learning. I also think that as a number of people regularly coming from NA to Europe, it’s only fair that some of us return the favour if we can, and hope that more people will be coming too from this side of the pond.

The main reason though is that as p4a is the one conference I would give up last of the different conferences I go to. It is consistently the most useful for me both professionally and personally due to the ideas I get to share with others, and which I am able to bring home and use on a regular basis. With p4a_na providing another chance for a similar type of learning and sharing taking place, how could I not take part? I’m really looking forward to the event. I also hear that Glenn is in charge of the kitchen during the conference, and given his reputation as a chef, that sealed the deal for me 🙂

Many Play4Agile attendees agree with Bruce that it’s the one conference we would give up last because it is consistently the most useful to us for both professional and personal development.  Will you join us?

I look forward to coming to Play4Agile NA for the following reasons:

  • I enjoy un-conferences where I bring my passion and ideas; and own the responsibility for my own learning.  I attended my 1st un-conference, Agile Open Toronto in April 2010 and have been hooked ever since.  For an introvert like myself, it has opened me up as a person.
  • It is a safe place where I get to connect with existing connections and I get to make new connections. The conversations I have with the other participants are real, natural and authentic. For an introvert like myself, I have the courage to share my vulnerability, as I am able to speak up freely and let myself be seen.  I am grateful to be part of a community that supports me and helps me to have the courage to freely share the whole me.
  • At Scrum Gathering Las Vegas in 2013, I experienced Agile Super Powers and discovered my purpose in life is playfulness. I inherently knew play as a child and somewhere along the line, I lost my sense of play. In 2014, I took Brene’s Brown’s virtual course, based on her book, “Gifts of Imperfections”, where I learned about Stuart Brown’s 7 properties of play:
    • apparently purposeless
    • voluntary – free will, not a “to do”
    • inherent attraction – “delights the soul”
    • freedom from time – “No deadlines”, “Be present”
    • diminished consciousness of self – “I am free to be me”
    • improvisational potential – “spontaneous”, “”play hooky”, “yes and …”
    • continuation desire – “I don’t want to stop”

Since then I have given myself permission to play because when I play, I am joyful and it naturally brings out the best in myself and in others with whom I play.  Play brings out my creativity and the creativity of others, which combined together co-creates magic.

  • There is an element of serendipity that exist at un-conferences like Play4Agile NA, which I have learned to embrace. Each un-conference is unique and I have learned and experienced something new at each un-conference, which has enrichened me as a person.
  • I get the opportunity to get out of my element and have fun!

Un-conferences are magical “you have to be there” experiences and combining it with play makes it a totally awesome “you don’t want to miss” experience! Why not come to Play4Agile NA and see if the above rings true for you as well?

Interested in learning how to use LEGO SERIOUS PLAY to get work done?  StrategicPlay.ca will be offering a 2-day workshop on Strategic Play with LEGO SERIOUS PLAY methodology immediately before Play4Agile North America.  Spend two days with master trainer Jacquie Lloyd-Smith learning how to use this collaborative and powerful approach to unlocking creative potential with individuals and teams.  Strategic Play is offering a workshop discount for participants who attend both the facilitation workshop and Play4Agile North America: details and registration info here.

All kinds of ideas germinate at Play4Agile. Within the Open Space, participants have created, play-tested and shared several useful games. LEGO SERIOUS PLAY also makes an appearance – there’s always a lot of LEGO at hand.

At Play4Agile 2013 a group of us put together this short LEGO animation about the spirit of Agile in about 3 hours. It’s very short – it turns out that LEGO animation is a really time-consuming process – but we had a lot of fun experimenting with a new technique.