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Each One Teach One at EVG10

Apr - 23 - 2010
Nicole C. Engard

Jennifer Bielewski and Jenny Liberatore from Lyrasis gave the Each One Teach One talk.

They started by telling us the most important thing is to tell your attendees what the outcomes of the workshop will be – what will they learn in this workshop? We were then introduced to the SMART Training Objectives:

  • Specific
    • Be specific about what people will be learning in the workshop. Without buy-in you won’t be able to teach people.
  • Measurable
    • Give people a way to look at what they achieved in the workshop.
  • Achievable
    • Use exercises to show them that they can complete the task.
  • Realistic
  • Time Bound
Each One Teach One

You never know what people really know, so be prepared to do more training than you originally planned. It might be helpful to do something fun as a pre-assessment and a post-assessment to see where your trainees are with their skills.

When training adults you need to think about how they learn. They need high participation, a collaborative environment, give experience based examples. Adults have also already decided what’s important for themselves so you have to bring them from that to what you think is important. Adults also expect information to be useful immediately (this sounds like me – I need to be able to use what I learned right away). We also have to keep the trainee’s attention, you can do this with crazy slides (visuals), giving activities, creating games, using humor and changing it up (don’t use just one method – that said, don’t mess with something that worked the first time).

Other tips for keeping your student’s attention include:

  • Keep it simple
  • Keep training cycles short (1-2 hrs)
  • Reinforce the material with practice
  • Motivate then reward
  • Teach only correct procedures
  • Repeat until you are sure they got it

Keep in mind that different types of expertise are necessary in an institution – so the person you think might be the best trainer isn’t. Along those lines, the trainer doesn’t have to know everything (I know I don’t! If I don’t know the answer then I write down the question and research it and come back later with the answer). If staff want to train, let them give it a whirl – you never know when you’re going to find a star.

There are many different instructional strategies including:

  • lecture
  • small group exercises
  • answer questions
  • hands-on
  • demos
  • discussion
  • help apply content to job

One way that the presenters like to use the ‘Napkin Method’ when coming up with their workshops. Basically the theory is that the best ideas come about when you’re just brainstorming (napkin coming from the idea of jotting ideas down on a napkin at dinner or at the bar).

We then did an exercise using the Napkin Method – and I learned that I am no good at thinking about things like this. Which is something you have to think about. I always hated workshops that told me only 1 way to do things (not that this workshop did that!) because everyone thinks differently and organizes things differently.

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