When you deliver your train the trainer activities, your trainers should know that training activities can be fun, that training activities should be engaging, and that training activities must be effective.
Aren’t Fun Training Activities Engaging?
When a team asks you to make your training fun, work hard to make sure you are not adding fun elements to appease the fun factor. In other words, don’t throw in a bunch of garbage activities. What is a garbage activity? I am glad you asked, check out my post on the ATD blog on Throwing Away Your Garbage Activities.
Activities can be meaningful, engaging, and fun if done correctly. There are several factors in building a garbage-free training, the first of which is to use activities that are appropriate for the phase of instruction. One simplified model with four phases of instructions is the Anchor, Content, Application, Future Use model.
Using that model, I’ve put together 20 engaging activities that can be introduced to trainers by phase of instruction.
Train-the-Trainer Anchor Activities: Connect Learners to the Topic
- Would You Rather: Boost the energy level in the room and get people laughing together.
- Name Tag Switch: A challenging icebreaker focused on listening skills.
- 6-Word Memoir: A concise way for participants to share.
- The Messy Start: Get learners thinking about the topic at hand as soon as they enter the room (or the Webinar).
- Haikus: Tap into learners’ creativity and learn about them at the same time.
Train-the-Trainer: Creative Ways to Share Content
- Facilitating Dialog: When you have some “experts” in the room, have them get the dialog started.
- Cosmo-style Quiz: Don’t judge it until you’ve tried it.
- Storytelling: Stories stick.
- Draw It: Why not tell the story in pictures?
- Organizing Stickies: Create a visual representation of data, opinions or a concept.
- Speed Dating: Get people discussing the topic quickly.
Train-the-Trainer Application Activities: Practice and Demonstrate New Skills
- Polling: Get large groups involved. It can be low or high tech.
- Kahoot: Games are great for most groups. Let them play and compete. Speed matters so it isn’t just knowing the answer.
- Role Play: I saw you roll your eyes. Call it something else, but practicing in scenarios is essential for many objectives.
- How I see It: Lay perceptions on the table and discover the grey areas in our perceptions.
- Build a Puzzle: This never fails. Just make it intentional.
Train-the-Trainer Future Use Activities
- Action Plans: Use this approach to action plans to “Double the likelihood that learners will apply what they’ve learned”
- Magic Paper: A low-tech way that creates shared accountability.
- Group Debrief: A whole list of ideas to improve debriefs.
- FlashCards: Put a job aid in your learner’s pocket.
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