Begin training by asking “common ground” questions that help the participants feel that they have something in common in relation to the training topic. A “common ground” question begins with: “How many of you…?” The participants who relate to the question should respond by raising their hands. Make sure that you ask enough questions to ensure that every participant feels included. For example, at the beginning of a conflict management class, if you ask: “How many of you have experienced conflict in your life?”, it is a good possibility that everyone will raise their hands. However, if you ask: “How many of you enjoy conflict?”, you probably need to follow that by asking: “How many of you would rather do … Read the rest
“Creativity is piercing the mundane to find the marvelous.” Bill Moyers
This was the last day of the second 5-day train the trainer. Last night, after getting back so late from the trip to the Dead Sea restaurant, I stayed up until 2 a.m. reviewing 27 of the participants’ lesson plans. As opposed to last week’s participants, who were often confused, I had about 7 lesson plans that were excellent. (I attribute this to: (1) reminding them to compare their lesson plans to the examples in their binders and (2) walking them through the different elements of the lesson plan at two different points to make sure they understood what each category meant).
This group also enjoyed the Jeopardy game. … Read the rest
“Thinking is the hardest work there is, which is the probable reason why so few engage in it.”< Henry Ford
There is nothing sadder than a trainer who wants to engage an audience and can’t get anyone to participate. So how do you prime learners to actively participate?
There are three techniques that can subtly release learners’ inhibitions about participating from the very beginning of the training program.
The first technique is to simply begin with common ground questions. For example: “How many of you like to conduct training?” “How many of you think that your participants enjoy your training?” “How many of you are deluded?”
As you ask each question, model raising your hand. Then ask enough questions … Read the rest
In a recent workshop, Wanda Sloan, HR Diversity/Staff Development Specialist at Blackhawk Technical College, asked an intriguing question: How can we create a learning community in a workshop?Our excellent group came up with five techniques that we have used. My task is to share them with you. (And I know if I forget something important, Shirley, David, Wanda or Anna will let me know!)
There are three simple ways to build and reinforce connections among learners. I call them simple because they don’t require any real planning, preparation, or materials. We’ll discuss those in today’s Tip.
There are two other ways that are very colorful and do require some planning, preparation, and materials. We’ll discuss those in the next Tip.… Read the rest