Tip #186: Favorite Give-Aways #3

Great prizes for pop ups, games, and wise insights include bendables and bug-eyed novelties. You may be wondering what I’m talking about!
Bendables are three inch high hard plastic figures that can stand and have arms, legs and torsos that can bend. My personal favorites are the star student bendables, with star-shaped heads, although many participants will trade to get the red devil bendables, with horns and tails! There are lots of other types of bendables, including happy faced guys, and different zoo animals that are two-legged with animal faces. Participants have a lot of fun bending them into sitting and standing positions, and perching them on top of ducks or glasses. These are not toxic like the dog and cat bendables that were recalled from lots of libraries a few years ago. The only caution is that it is wiser to hand out bendables rather than to throw them, because they could easily take an eye out!

Bug-eyed novelties are small, rounded soft plastic items such as tropical fish or happy faced guys heads that are filled with a liquid. When you squeeze them, their eyes bug out! They are surprising, colorful, and cute. Although I refer to them as bug-eyed novelties, you’ll have better success finding them under novelties “with putty eyes.” I just ordered some new ones that are Halloween characters with putty eyes, which will be perfect for upcoming October workshops! The one caution about them is that they are wrapped in plastic and should probably stay wrapped. The liquid that enables their eyes to bug out often leaks and, because it is somewhat oily, can make a mess. Definitely not something to bring home to children.

Here are two other give-aways that were very effective in a recent workshop- on computer software changes!! So, all of you who do computer training and are wondering how to incorporate these items into your training programs, please pay attention!! 🙂

“Hi Deb,

We recently did training on a new software application. It was our loan origination platform, so it was quite comprehensive and a big change. The project lead requested that I order inflatable hammers—for pounding away frustrations—and hand clappers—for completing a skill or a loan. I got both, in neon colors, from Oriental Trading company. The clappers included a strobe light handle. They were both very colorful and a big “hit.”

Sarah Schenkat
Training/HR Specialist
Badgerland Farm Credit Services”

Sarah, thanks so much for your letter. I’ve used clappers before, but they weren’t as snazzy- and I’ve never used inflatable hammers, or any other inflatable toys, before. What terrific ideas!

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