Showing posts from 2013

Ten energizers, games and exercises for training and facilitation on video

Games, energizers and exercises can be very useful in creating a safe and relaxed atmosphere in the group, but they can also be very helpful in building understanding in complex knowledge transfer or planning processes. Nicole Kienhuis and Simon Koolwijk filmed 10 exercises on video, which can be applied for trainings or facilitation events. 1. Trust:   This is a physical exercise, which helps to create a more relaxed atmosphere in the group. Finally it helps to build more trust amongst group members during an event.   Watch video:   Trust . 2. Two truths and a lie: This exercise is very practical for getting to know each other in the beginning of an event. It can help to break the ice and can stimulate a humoristic atmosphere in the group. Watch video:   Two truths and a lie . 3. Structured thinking: This exercise is a powerful introduction in explaining the importance of structured thinking. Especially in processes such as planning, design and curriculum development the

Technology of participation (ToP) – practical, useful, basic facilitation methods for increasing learning results in teaching

"Teach and train what inspires you!” This is an advice I got long time ago from a French teacher, when I was participating in a language course in Paris. “Read and study what interests you and teach what inspires you!” , he said. “This always makes learning easy! Because it gives energy!” “Inspiration from a teacher, always has an impact on others”.   “So study and teach, what you like to teach!” This life story always comes back to me, when I train facilitators and teachers in the Technology of Participation Techniques (ToP). It is always fun to create an atmosphere of involvement and participation! The techniques are useful tools to optimize people’s/ student’s participation in the classroom. ToP has been developed by the Institute of Cultural Affairs – USA. In 1997 I was trained as a senior trainer in ToP methods in Phoenix, USA. There I had the opportunity to meet professionals in education, youth work and social work on how they had integrated the ToP basic facilitation

Trust – An exercise for building trust in groups!

‘Trust’ is a very useful exercise in creating trust in groups during a training or facilitation event. The exercise is simple, easy to apply and promotes connections between people.   ‘Trust’ is   visualized by Nicole Kienhuis and Simon Koolwijk.     Watch the exercise at video:  

How to deal with your own pitfalls as a facilitator or trainer?

‘Shit happens!’   This is a quote from one of my colleague trainers/ facilitators,   that I still keep in my mind when I have had a difficult workshop or training. There are occasions when we as trainers/ facilitators are triggered or put off by a difficult group of participants. While reading the book ‘Good for the Group – Five mirrors for blind spots – The first self-help book for trainers’ written by Karin de Galan , I was both inspired and triggered to reflect on my own learning stage as a facilitator/ trainer. Last year I remember,   I had a participant in my workshop who kept complaining about his director after his director had left after a debriefing of 45 minutes. I tried my best to have his colleague managers to address   his own behavior, but it failed.   After this, I somehow frooze and was not able anymore in discovering ways to find meaningful contact with him and to re-energize the group. I remember, I felt one week very bad about this experience!   ‘Shit happens!’   Bu

Connecting Video stories to Most Significant Change (MSC)

Most Significant Change is an excellent evaluation tool for measuring behavioral change with beneficiaries during a project period. MSC has a step based approach where personal stories from key stakeholders are collected, analyzed and verified. One of the key steps is the phase of defining the 'Domain of Change' and collecting the stories. This is the phase where the MSC-question is asked for a specific change in a domain. For example: (1) Looking back over the last 2 years, (2) what do you think was, (3) the most significant (4) change (5) in the development of your business (6) in your community? Generally, three to five domains are a manageable number for conducting a MSC-evaluation. The stories are collected, analyzed, and verified from and with a selected group of beneficiairies. An important part is the process of drawing conclusions, lessons and recommendations. Involvement of the right stakeholders determines the quality of the outcome of the evaluation. Since

Minefield exercise – excellent game for building trust en discussing leadership roles!

Crossing the minefield blind folded.   One person is directed through a minefield with the assistance of a guide.   This game / exercise is excellent for building trust, discussing leadership roles and letting go responsibilities.   This game has been visualized by Nicole Kienhuis   and Simon Koolwijk .   Watch the exercise at the video:

Storytelling by video as a tool for building bridges

Collecting personal stories can provide some interesting insights on what is going on in a project or a community.   In june 2013, I worked for two weeks with .   This organization, based in Salon de Provence – France, aims to strengthen organisations and structures of social work in applying participatory video for building social cohesion amongst people or communities. trains social workers, teachers, trainers who work with groups or communities. Their work is mainly based in France, but also participates in projects in Africa and Canada. Video productions are disseminated through their webtv channel at Storytelling   by local entrepreneurs Marseille – Provence has been designated in 2013 as cultural capital of Europe. Under the name MP13 various cultural activities are organized in Marseille and neighboring cities (Aix en Provence, Arlon, Salon de Provence) to promote the region in France and to other European countries. In the con

Make your own circle – An exercise for solving complex issues!

‘Make your own circle’ is a very useful exercise in thinking through the process of solving complex issues. The exercise can be used for training courses, facilitation events or discussions which are linked to solving complex problems.   ‘Make your own circle’ is   visualized by Nicole Kienhuis and SimonKoolwijk .     Watch the exercise at video:  

Expressing emotions – Exaggerating feelings can be very humoristic and bring sensitive issues in perspective!

'Expressing emotions’ is a very useful exercise in bringing people in a relaxed atmosphere during a training or facilitation event. The exercise is humoristic and it can bring sensitive issues in perspective.   ‘Expressing Emotions’ is   visualized by NicoleKienhuis and Simon Koolwijk .      Watch the exercise at video:  

Brainteaser – Do not jump to conclusions too quickly!

Do not jump to conclusions too quickly! That is the message in the Brainteaser, visualized by Nicole Kienhuis and Simon Koolwijk .   Patience can be a valuable attitude in decision making.   Watch the Brainteaser:

Facilitation skills as a key requirement for evaluators

Is monitoring and evaluation a hype? Or is a sustainable change taking place in international development, that embeds M & E processes in the structures of organizations,  governments and projects?  According to Michael  Quinn Patton, lecturer in the E-learning course “Emerging practices in development evaluations”   offered by MyMandE, the demand for M & E has increased dramatically during the last couple of years in international development.  Due to the increasing demand from citizens, civil society and donor organizations for more accountability and transparency, governments and development organizations are investing more and more in M & E systems, staff training in M & E, mid-term reviews, learning networks and evaluations. Knowledge exchange and an increasing need for ‘lesson learning’ under development professionals accelerates this demand. M & E processes become ownership driven The client is increasingly becoming the starting point of evaluations.

Playful connections: The Social Media Energizer

Playful connections is the second exercise – energizer Nicole Kienhuis and SimonKoolwijk visualized by video. The exercise can be applied as a warm-up, icebreaker or a fun game at trainings or facilitation events, especially as an introduction to discuss issues on social media. Watch:   Playful connections – The Social Media Energizer.