Internet notebook about my work: deep listening to facilitate positive change


Tuesday 11 November 2008

Alternative methods for information transfer

When organizing a training workshop, formulate the outcomes and focus on methods to create learning experiences to generate the outcomes. Outcomes are formulated in terms of desired knowledge, attitudes and skills. Preferably based on demand articulation in advance. Professionals learn little from presentations. Learning increases with the degree they are in control of their own learning process. To create learning experiences one has to think in alternative methods for one-way information transfer. In some recent workshops I used:

• Story telling in small groups about what worked
• Multiple choice or quiz questions about basics
• Group brainstorm to outline concepts, definitions, principles, strategies
• Brainstorm on aspects of issues at four flipcharts (carrousel)
• Group interview with the resource person (“how-to” questions)
• Group work on specific issue or question and plenary presentations
Conversation café.
Group learning can be enriched through feedback by the facilitator and resource persons. The facilitator has to bite his/her tongue and only adds some extra wisdom where the group – though its peer exchange – has laid the foundation for the next ‘zone’ of learning. A workshop blog can help to generate reflection, trigger new questions and add to learning beyond the oral exchange and time limits of the workshop. When initiated by participants it also can become a driver of further knowledge networking when everyone is home again.

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