Using Adult Learning Activities and Flip Charts to Engage Adult Learners

Using Adult Learning Activities and Flip Charts to Engage Adult Learners

Many trainers, adult educators, and facilitators search for group activities, training ideas, adult learning activities, and various strategies to tap into brain research on how people learn best in order to enhance their training sessions.

Using Adult Learning Activities and Flip Charts to Engage Adult Learners

One simple technique is to use flip charts (or flipcharts, if you prefer) in order to get your adult learners actively engaged in a brainstorming or problem-solving session by having them “scribe” or write flip chart content for you.

Using Adult Learning Activities and Flip Charts to Engage Adult Learners by The Creative Trainer – Robert W. Lucas, Awarding Winning Author, and Blogger

Here is how this works:

  • Cut a standard sheet of flip chart paper into 4 inches (appx 10cm) strips and pass them out to each participant;
  • Give each person a flip chart marker (water-based);
  • Ask a question that is pertinent to your session content. For example, in a customer service session, you might ask something like: “What one way could we better serve our customers?”;
  • Have them write down a short statement for their response (e.g. Follow-up to ensure their satisfaction);
  • Once everyone has finished, have them bring their sheet to the front of the room and tape it to a blank sheet of flipchart paper (from the top down);
  • As they post their comment, have them verbally share it and expand/answer questions about their idea;
  • Once everyone has completed the task, spend a few minutes summarizing their ideas and relating it to other session content covered to that point and answer any questions they have before moving on.

For additional creative ideas on how to participants in adult learning environments or for making, using, transporting and storing flip charts, get copies of The Creative Training Idea Book: Inspired Tips and Techniques for Engaging and Effective Learning and The Big Book of Flip Charts: A Comprehensive Guide for Presenters, Trainers, and Team Facilitators.

Creative Strategy for Evenly Tearing Flip Chart Pages

Creative Strategy for Evenly Tearing Flip Chart Pages

If you have ever struggled to tear a sheet of flip chart paper from a pad on an easel during a training session, you know it is sometimes not an easy task. When you struggle, it is often the result of poor product design. Some manufacturers do not perforate the tops of the sheets for easy removal. Most often, this occurs on less expensive products with the thinner paper quality. Such designs can make it almost impossible to get the paper to begin separating from the binding glue or to pull away evenly and in a straight tear line.

Creative Strategy for Evenly Tearing Flip Chart Pages

Evenly Tearing Flip Chart Pages by The Creative Trainer

When the flip chart paper pad you purchase is not perforated (small cuts along the top edge), use a craft knife or single-edged razor blade to cut 1-inch-long slits about an inch apart across the top of each page. You can do this by placing the pad on a solid surface and carefully pressing firmly into the paper in a straight line all along the top edge of the pad.  In this manner, you can perforate several pages at a time. Depending on whether you are left or right-handed, be sure the first slit overlaps the edge where you will start to tear. This will allow you can to evenly start a tear when ready to remove a sheet of paper.

Meet the Blog Article Author

Robert W. ‘Bob’ Lucas – Understand Why He is an Authority in the Creative Training Skills Industry

Robert W. ‘Bob’ Lucas has been a trainer, presenter, customer service expert, and adult educator for over four decades. He has written hundreds of articles on training, writing, self-publishing, and workplace learning skills and issues. He is also an award-winning author. Robert W. Lucas has written thirty-seven books. The book topics included: writing, relationships, customer service, brain-based learning,  and creative training strategies, interpersonal communication, diversity, and supervisory skills. Additionally, he has contributed articles, chapters, and activities to eighteen compilation books. Mr. Lucas is retired from the U.S. Marine Corps in 1991 after twenty-two years of active and reserve service.

Creative Way to Add Images To Your Flip Charts

Creative Way to Add Images To Your Flip Charts

If you want to add creative bullet points that tie to a session theme, add novelty, or provide visual enhancement to your written messages, take the time to gather a few tools for your trainer’s toolbox.

Creative Way to Add Images To Your Flip Charts

Go to art, craft, or another store in your area or on the Internet that sells wooden or cloth craft shapes.  There are literally hundreds of items used by artists and craft enthusiasts that can be used to enhance your presentation. For example, plastic or wooden figures of flowers, clothing shapes, furniture, people, equipment, or whatever can be used to trace graphic icons or images. Simply put on a blank flip chart page and trace the shape as you prepare your flip chart pages in advance of a learning event. If you still have access to an overhead projector, project the image to enlarge it on your flipchart paper and trace.

Creative Way to Add Images To Your Flip Charts by The Creative Trainer – Robert W. Lucas, Awarding Winning Adult Learning & Training Author

Learn This Blogger – Robert W. Lucas

Robert W. Lucas is an internationally-known author and learning and performance expert. He specializes in workplace performance-based training and consulting services. Furthermore, he has four decades of experience in human resources development, management, and customer service in a variety of organizational environments. Robert Lucas was the 1995 and 2011 President of the Central Florida Chapter of the American Society for Training and Development (ASTD).

Robert W. Lucas has lived, traveled, and worked in 28 different countries and geographic areas. During the past 40 years, Bob has shared his knowledge with workplace professionals from hundreds of organizations, such as Webster University, AAA, Orange County Clerk of Courts, Walt Disney World, SeaWorld, Martin Marietta, all U.S. military branches, and Wachovia Bank. In addition, Bob has provided consulting and training services to numerous major organizations on a variety of workplace learning topics. To contact Bob visit his website at www.robertwlucas.com or his blog www.thecreativetrainer.com.

Flip Chart 101 – Basic Strategies for Effectively Using Flip Charts – Positioning Your Easel

Flip Chart 101 – Basic Strategies for Effectively Using Flip Charts – Positioning Your Easel

There are many creative ways for trainers, facilitators, presenters, educators, and meeting leaders to enhance what they put onto flip chart paper. However, before getting too fancy you should master some flipchart basics when creating and effectively using a flip chart and flip chart easel. Call this Flip Chart 101 – Basic strategies for effectively using flip charts – positioning your easel.

Effectively Using Flip Charts – Positioning Your Easel

Here are two tips for effectively using your flip charts to convey messages to learners, audience members, or meeting attendees:

Position the Easel in the Correct Location. Lighting affects the visibility of what you write on your flip chart paper.  To ensure that everyone in the room can view your message, think about where you place your easel. Overhead lighting should highlight your page, not cast shadows. This means that your light should shine directly in front of the easel and not come from behind it.

Flip Chart 101 - Basic Strategies for Effectively Using Flip Charts - Positioning Your Easel

 Stand on the Correct Side of the Easel.  If you have ever waited impatiently for someone who is writing on a flip chart page to move aside, so that you could read what they wrote and take notes, you understand the importance of positioning yourself correctly.

If you are right-handed, stand to the left of your easel and extend your arm across the page so that you do not block your participant’s view. If you are left-handed, stand to the right of your easel.

Like anything else in a learning or meeting environment, you increase your effectiveness as a trainer, facilitator, educator, or meeting leader if you use sound facilitation or presentation skills.

For more ideas on effectively making, using, transporting, and storing flip charts, get a copy of The Big Book of Flip Charts: A Comprehensive Guide for Presenters, Trainers and Team Facilitators.

YOUR THOUGHTS? – Please share any tips for effectively using flip charts in adult learning environments?