Master Trainer Training Wrap Up

Even though the four days of face-to-face training is over the learning continues. Now that we have returned to our libraries we are challenged with applying all the skills we learned to our every day jobs.

Between now and March 2009, each master trainer participant will design and present a new one-hour training session at his or her library. We will have coaching from our trainers and project teammates. We will also have additional training delivered online via synchronous and asynchronous platforms. In March we return to Chapel Hill for an additional two days of training and a final showcase where we present an overview of our training to library directors and other master trainers from across the state.

Stay tuned for updates as the program continues!

Master Trainer Training Day 4

Thursday’s Agenda

  • Presentations and feedback
  • Learning styles
  • Wrap up

My group went first this morning with the delivery of our one-hour training session on stress management. The session went really well. It was fun being a part of training outside of my normal area–and away from a computer. We started out facilitating a discussion of signs of stress followed by techniques for managing stress. We led the participants through some stretches as well as deep breathing exercises. We discussed reframing stressful situations. We then had breakout groups and gave each group three scenarios to discuss and brainstorm ways to cope with an everyday stessor like traffic. We brought the groups back together and had them share highlights of their discussions. The session concluded with a guided visualization and chance for each participant to share one change he or she will make to cope with stress.

My group received a lot of positive feedback and I may find a way to add this to our offerings at PLCMC.

The group that followed my group did a one-hour session on “Save As.” You may be wondering how it can take an hour to cover save as. If so, then you need to come to a public computer basics class! This session covered how to save and find files you’ve saved. How to save to different media. How to save as rich text. I loved one of the activities this group did with file types and post it notes. They had flip charts on the wall representing different kinds of files. Then they had post it notes with file extensions. The participants had to take the post it notes and stick them to the appropriate flip chart. Afterwards the facilitator had pink heart shaped post it notes labeled as RTF and stuck one on each of the flip charts. This was a creative and low-tech way to teach file extensions. I know everytime I hear RTF I’ll visualize those heart shaped post it notes.

After lunch we learned about learning styles. What better way to learn than to assess your own learning style. We took a short learning styles quiz then plotted our scores on a chart. I scored the highest in the “Actor” quadrant preferring to learn by both doing and trying.

What’s interesting is that I saved my test results from when I took this test in 2006 and my score has flipped. In 2006 I was an “Applier” who prefers to learn by trying and thinking.

2008 2006

When I read over the descriptions of both learning styles I can see how I’ve changed over two years. In 2006 I mostly did technology training which lends itself more to the Applier learning style. Now I work on a variety of topics and do mostly online training. I think the transition is also a natural progression from training to facilitating.

If you want to take a very detailed learning style self assessment try this one. I took this one back in 2006 as well and decided to retake it tonight. My learning style has changed here as well. I am much more social, physical, and verbal and less aural.

Master Trainer Training Day 3

Wednesday’s Agenda

  • Group training designs

On Monday of this week we were divided into three groups of six participants. Each group selected a topic to create a one-hour training session. All of the information that we learn this week is geared to help us with the design of this session so that we can put the theories immediately into practice.

I purposely selected a group that was not focusing on technology training. I wanted to stretch out of the area where I normally do most of my training. My group was initially the “staff training group” and we eventually settled on the topic of stress management for our one-hour presentation.

My other group members are all from smaller, public library systems. It was interesting to hear the challenges they face in their roles and systems.

MT 017

We spent today in our groups working on our design, visual aids, and doing run throughs of our presentations. One lucky group gave their presentation today. The other two groups give their presentations tomorrow. This training is mentally exhausting. When I travel I bring books to read and always have the best intentions of catching up on email and other tasks that I don’t have time to do at home. I find though that I am too tired to read or think about anything after the end of a long day. Tomorrow will be even longer as we have to give our presentations, sit through training, then drive home!

Master Trainer Training Day 2

Tuesday’s Agenda

  • 2-minute presentations
  • Building a healthy workshop climate
  • Selecting appropriate training techniques
  • Visual aids for successful training
  • Pulling it all together
  • Group training design project time

Day 2 begins with each of the 18 participants giving a 2-minute presentation on how to do something. I did a demonstration of how to do the Heimlich maneuver. The rest of the group was much more creative. We learned how to belly dance, make a pinwheel, make a paper airplane, power walk, deep breathe, make a candy bar wrapper, and hip hop dance.

2-minute presentations are a great way to see each other’s presentation style and is a fun ice breaker for the group.

As part of our building a healthy workshop climate we discussed group development. What’s been fascinating for me is to watch and observe the group development and group dynamics within our large and small groups. It’s something I’ve never given much thought to but the topic coincides with what I am learning in my interpersonal communication theory class.

Group development explains why the dynamics of a group can change so much with the addition of a new group member or with the absence of a group member. Think of a family member coming to visit at the holidays. The same group behavior and dynamics occur on a smaller scale with every session or class you teach.

Master Trainer Training Day 1

Monday’s Agenda

  • Introduction and overview
  • The job of a trainer
  • How we learn
  • Conducting an accurate needs assessment
  • Establishing useful learning objectives
  • Cycle of learning

As part of establishing a healthy and safe workshop climate our facilitators did a great job of making us feel welcome prior to our arrival in Chapel Hill, NC. We’ve communicated by email, telephone, and blog. We’ve received a list of all the participants along with their contact info and a photo. I arrived a few minutes before the session began and found a seat next to Lori Special who I had connected with during a session last week online in Adobe Connect. It’s always nice to find a familiar face in the crowd.

One of the fun things we did to start the day off was write on a piece of a flip chart one thing we would like to get out the training this week. That along with our 1-slide introduction was posted on the wall during the week. This was a fun way to get to know other participants.

MT 010 MT 011 MT 014 MT 015

The curriculum is very focused on not only creating learner-centered training but creating training and learning opportunities that stick. We looked at a retention pyramid. People retain 5% from lectures and 30% from demonstration. If this is the case, why do we even bother with lectures? Want to increase retention? Look at practice by doing for 75% retention and teaching others for 90% retention. Let’s change the old adage of “those who can’t…” to “those who want to remember teach!”

Needs assessments begin with KSA’s and some simple arithmetic. Take your ideal and subtract the present state. The difference is what you need to offer through training.

  Knowledge Skills Attitude
Mastery What do learners need to know? What do learners need to be able to do? What do learners need to be able to believe or feel?
Present State What do learners know? What can learners do? What do learners believe or feel?
Difference What new information do learners need to know? What new skills do learners need? What beliefs would serve learners better?

After the session today I had dinner with Meredith Farkas and her husband Adam. Meredith is in Chapel Hill at the TRLN Management Academy. It was great to catch up with Meredith in person. She was glowing and I can’t wait to see what a cute baby she and Adam have!

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