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101 Interactive Training Techniques


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Techniques from the presentation "101 Interactive Training Techniques to Increase Learning" by Crystal Schimpf, Kieran Hixon & Nancy Trimm at the Colorado Association of Libraries 2011 Conference.

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101 Interactive Training Techniques

  1. 1. 101 Interactive Training Techniques with Crystal Schimpf, Kieran Hixon, & Nancy Trimm List of Techniques 1. Action Plan: Ask participants to write down specific ways in which they will apply the skills or knowledge from the training in their job, school, or personal lives. 2. Analogies: Use an analogy to relate the topic to something they already know. 3. BINGO: Create a bingo card based on information covered in the training and give out prizes to anyone who gets a “bingo” or “blackout” by being attentive. 4. Brainstorming: Generate ideas amongst participants by eliciting quick contributions without trainer comment or opinion. Record the ideas as they are shared. 5. Candy: Give candy as a reward for participation, or just for fun, to motivate participants. 6. Caption Comprehension: Find a funny picture to share with the class, and have them create a caption that relates to the subject being taught. Then have the class vote on the best caption and reward the winner with chocolate. 7. Case Study: Have participants discuss a real case study. Give them discussion questions as applicable to the topic. 8. Catch Phrase: Relate the material to a catch phrase, song lyric, or slogan from pop culture, to help people remember key concepts. 9. Celebrate: Celebrate the accomplishments of workshop participants. Give praise, and reward throughout the training. 10. Color Mark-up: Provide color markers, crayons, or pencils. Have participants take time to mark up their handouts. Have them draw squares or circles around important words, or underline key concepts. 11. Compare Notes: Have participants work in pairs and compare their notes, sharing what they thought was most important 12. Computer Games: Find free games on the Internet that reinforce skills, such as mouse practice programs. 13. Connecting: Have participants introduce themselves to 3 new people. Have them share one thing they know about the topic and one thing they would like to learn. 14. Create a Metaphor: First, brainstorm the objects (from household, grocery store, etc.). Then, have participants relate the topic to common objects. 15. Create a Quiz: Have participants create a quiz question that they know the answer to, based on the topic. Have them write the question on one side of an index card, and the answer on the other. Then have them work in pairs or small groups to share questions. 16. Create an Analogy: Have participants relate the topic to other things in life that they are familiar with. Have them create an analogy and share it with others. 17. Debate: Engage the class in an open debate on a controversial topic. Set ground rules, and be sure to not impose your own thoughts on the group. 18. Demonstration: Show participants how to perform a technology skill or task. 19. Doodle & Draw: Have participants draw a picture or diagram that illustrates the subject being covered. 20. Exploration Activity: Have participants explore a website or program. Use an activity sheet to guide them through the exploration process, with questions like “Name three features of this program/website” and “How could you utilize this program in your job?” 21. Five Finger Understanding: Ask participants to give a show of fingers, on a scale of 1 to 5, how well they understand the topic. Show 5 fingers if they understand it very well, 3 if they
  2. 2. only understand it somewhat, or 1 if they do not understand at all.22. Flip Chart Questions: During a break, have participants respond to questions on flip charts using post-its or markers. Discuss the responses after the break.23. Game: Use games to review training material.24. Graffiti Wall: Use flip charts or a white board to create a space for participants to write “graffiti” about the topic, including their opinions and feelings. Encourage creative expression, as well as thoughtful discussion.25. Group Review: Ask participants to share what they learned. Use a flip chart to record their responses.26. Group Shout Out: Ask everyone to think of one word (individually) that summarizes a topic, and have them shout it out simultaneously on the count of three.27. Group Swap: Have participants discuss in small groups, and then have half of the group members move to a different group and share what was discussed.28. Guided Teaching: Use leading questions to guide participants through the material, using their own knowledge.29. High Five: Give high fives to participants at the end of the workshop or at key points, to reward and motivate.30. Identify a Problem: Work in groups to determine problems that would be solved by the information being covered.31. Information Scavenger Hunt: Have participants search for information on the Internet related to the topic.32. Internet Scavenger Hunt: Have participants search for information about the topic by following a scavenger hunt on the Internet.33. Introduction Icebreaker: Have participants walk around the room and introduce themselves to 3 new people. Have them share their name, what they do, and one thing they know about the training topic.34. Introduction Round Robin: Have participants stand up and share their name, what they do, and one thing they would like to learn or gain from the training workshop.35. Journal: Have participants journal about their experience during the training. Encourage them to continue to journal after the training is over.36. Learning Plan: Ask participants to write down specific additional things they want to learn because of what they have learned in the course.37. Manifesto: Have participants work together in groups to create a manifesto statement about how they will apply the topic at hand. Have each group share their manifesto statements and then compile them for the class to have after the workshop is over.38. Map it: Instead of a traditional outline, create a road map that visits the topics being covered. Allow participants to choose what “direction” they will go in by selecting the topics they are most interested in.39. Mark-up: Have participants take time to mark up their handouts. Have them draw squares or circles around important words, or underline key concepts.40. Matching Mark-up: Have participants match key concepts to real life scenarios. Give examples on a worksheet.41. Matching Walkabout: Have participants match key concepts to real life scenarios using index cards or post its. Create “scenario areas” around the room on tables or using flip charts, and have participants tag the areas with key concepts using post its, taping index cards, or writing directly on the flip charts.42. Meet & Greet - Introduce yourself to your neighbor. Ask them what they hope to learn in this session, and one thing they already know about the topic.43. Movement poll: Poll the class and have them do something physical in response, such as standing up, shaking a leg, or spinning around.44. Musical chairs: Have participants change seats by playing musical chairs. Give them time to
  3. 3. gather their things before beginning, then play music and have them walk around the room. When the music stops, they must take the closest available seat.45. Next Steps: have participants write down how they will use what they’ve learned and what they want to learn next. Have students share before leaving class.46. Noisemakers: Give everyone a noisemaker, and ask them to make noise to applaud the contributions of fellow classmates.47. Observation: Give participants the opportunity to observe their newly learned skills being used in real life by experienced workers, either individually or as a group.48. Pair Explore: Have participants work in pairs to explore websites or print materials about the topic. Pair Share: Have participants talk in pairs and share two things they have learned so far.49. Peer Problem Solving: Have participants work in pairs to solve a real-life scenario together. Have each pair share their solution with the group.50. Peer Quiz: Have participants create three pop quiz questions to which they know the answer. Have them write each question on one side of and index card, with the answer on the back. Then have them share their questions with others in the workshop.51. Peer Teaching: Have participants work in pairs or small groups to teach each other material that has been covered. This allows for practice and review at the same time.52. Post-its Walkabout: Have participants write responses to a question on post-its, and have them share by sticking them around the room. Use flipcharts or whiteboards to organize responses by category.53. Post-its Questions: Have participants write their questions on post-its and stick them on the board during the break. When you come back from break, answer the questions and take down the sticky notes as they are answered.54. Picture Partners: Gather print images related to the topic, write discussion topics on the back, and then cut them in half. Distribute the halves to participants and have them find their matching image to determine their partner and discussion topic.55. Pre-Workshop Assignment: Email out an assignment prior to the training. At the beginning of the training, ask people to share their work.56. Question & Answer: Ask participants to come up with questions about the topic. Have other students try and answer the questions.57. Question Basket: Have participants write questions on index cards and drop them in a basket. Answer the questions as you have time throughout the workshop.58. Question Time Sponge: Write 3 things down you would like to learn today (on handout, index cards, post its and share in some way.59. Question Walkabout: Have participants walk around the room and look at questions on flip charts. Have them write their answers on the charts before sitting down.60. Read & React: Have participants read a brief article about the subject and then discuss their reaction in small groups.61. Review Time Sponge: During the break, have participants write down the most important thing you have learned so far.62. Role Play: Have participants work in pairs act out scenarios. Give them time to discuss what it feels like to be in a different position.63. Rotating Role Play: Have three of four participants act out scenarios as a group, so there are one or two observers. Have the observers give feedback and discuss the activity.64. Round Robin: At the beginning, go around the room and have everyone share one thing they would like to learn from the workshop.65. Scenario: Give participants a scenario similar to what they would encounter in real life. Let students work through the scenario together.66. Self-Assessment: Have participants reflect on what they have learned about a topic by giving a written or verbal self-assessment. Do not require that they share their responses.
  4. 4. 67. Share it Forward: Have participants think of three people they could share this information with, once class is over.68. Shout out: Have participants shout out responses to a brainstorm without having to raise their hands or be acknowledged.69. Show but not Tell: Demonstrate a skill without talking, have participants watch and then tell you what you did.70. Sing Along: Use a common tune (like “Take me out to the ballgame”) but rewrite the lyrics so they match your topic. Type up the lyrics and give them out to participants, and then have everyone sing along.71. Skills Practice: Allow students time to practice new skills being learned, with adequate time for independent practice.72. Small group review: Have participants work in groups to review the material, and then report back on three points that they thought were most important.73. Step by step: Have participants write down the steps of any new process begin taught, one step at a time. Then have them trade instructions with a partner and test to see if any steps were left out or are unclear.74. Sticker Reminder: Provide small stickers and have participants use them to mark up their handouts, specifically things they would like to remember or come back to later.75. Stories: Tell a personal story to help students relate to the topic students understand concepts or overcome fears.76. Storytelling: Have participants develop a fictional story to illustrate the topic.77. Stretch Break: If participants are getting restless or sleepy, take a quick guided stretch break to get the blood flowing and their brains working.78. Summarize & Share: Work in small groups to create a one sentence summary of what has been covered, and then share it with the entire class.79. T- Chart Wrap-Up: Draw a t-chart on a flip chart or white board, labeled +/Δ (plus/delta). Have participants share what they thought worked in the training (plus), and what they think could be improved (delta), and record these things on the chart.80. T-Chart Assessment: Draw a t-chart on a flip chart or white board, labeled +/Δ (plus/delta). Have participants write on post-its things they know (plus) and things they would like to learn (delta) about the training topic. Have participants put the post-its on the t-chart in the appropriate location.81. T-Chart Brainstorm: Draw a t-chart on a flip chart or white board, labeled pros/cons (or other opposites related to the topic). Have participants brainstorm ideas about the two columns, and have them identify which column their idea should be recorded in.82. Tagging: Have people use website tagging tools like to save websites used during the workshop.83. Take a Stand: Give participants an opportunity to openly comment on the topic, voicing their personal opinions, experiences, and ideas. Be sure to give everyone clear instructions on how much time they have to speak.84. Teach Back: Ask students to provide instruction for one another on a skill they’ve just mastered.85. Technology: Bring in technology like iPads, laptops, or ereaders to teach skills and engage participants.86. Tell a Joke: Bring humor into the workshop by telling a joke on a related topic, which will stimulate brain activity and promote learning87. Theres an App for That!: Preload iPods or iPads with apps related to your topic to use during the workshop.88. Thumbs Up/Thumbs Down: Ask yes/no questions and have participants respond by giving a thumbs up (yes) or thumbs down (no) sign.89. Time Sponge: Give an activity or discussion topic before class, or during breaks to prevent
  5. 5. dead time. 90. Top Ten: Have participants shout out the top ten (or top five) things they have learned so far. 91. True/False: Have participants work in groups. Give a list of true/false statements and have people discuss what they think is true and what is false, then give the correct answers. 92. Walkabout the room: Have participants walkabout the room to examine information on the topic at different stations. 93. Word Cloud: Have participants create a Wordle or Tagxedo using vocabulary from the workshop. 94. Word of the Day: Have participants yell out every time you say a particular key word. 95. Word Puzzle: Create a word puzzle using vocabulary related to the topic and give it to participants as a homework assignment. Create free word puzzles at the Discovery Education Puzzlemaker ( puzzlemaker/?CFID=13064574&CFTOKEN=69184810) 96. Word Shout: Have participants shout out specific words as you write them on the board, or display them on a screen. After each word shouted, give a brief explanation or definition. 97. Write It, Apply It: Have participants write down four ways they will apply this information to their job or life. 98. Write & Review: Have participants jot down three things they learned from an activity, then share them with others in their group.Only 3 techniques to go! Do you have any ideas for Interactive Training Techniques that are notincluded in this list? Please add a comment.