Preparing for Effective Flip Charts Use

Preparing for Effective Flip Charts Use

The beauty of flip charts as a training aid is that with a bit of planning and practice most people can deliver and record information like a professional with them.

Preparing for Effective Flip Charts Use by The Creative Trainer – Robert W. Lucas, Awarding Winning Creative Training Author

Here are three flip chart tips that will help you in your quest to look like a flip chart expert:

Preparing for Effective Flip Charts Use

1.  Create a colorful cover sheet that introduces your topic and have it showing as participants walk into the room.

2.  Place 2-3 inch strips of masking tape along the edge of your flip chart easel before learners arrive so that it is ready when you are to post pages on the wall with minimum effort and lost time.

3.  Put tabs made of 1-2 inch masking tape (this works better than the blue or green painters tape for visibility) or sticky note paper strips on each page and write the flip chart page topics on them. This allows you to quickly identify content on-page that you want to flip to during your session.

BONUS TIP: When using tip number 3, print the content topic on both the front and back of each tab so that you can read them whether the page has been turned or not.

Storing and Protecting Prepared Flip Charts

Storing and Protecting Prepared Flip Charts

You spend a lot of time and effort in creating flip charts to support your training sessions and presentations. It just makes sense that you should give thought to how to store and protect them between uses. This consideration falls under the category of planning and design when you are considering what your program will include and the materials that you will need to deliver the session.

There are numerous ways to store your flip chart pads so they are protected from damage while not being used for a presentation. The biggest challenge most people find is where to put the storage units!

Some commercial ideas for storage that can be found in office, teacher, and graphic art supply stores. Since these storage units are often used to hold artwork and drafting blueprints or maps, stores that sell products related to those industries are also possible sources to get your storage units.

Storing and Protecting Prepared Flip Charts by The Creative Trainer – Robert W. Lucas, Awarding Winning Brain-Based Adult Training Author

Some common storage types include:

Storing and Protecting Prepared Flip Charts

  • Flat drawer storage unit

You can purchase large flat file cabinets specifically made for storage in commercial art departments or for storage of architectural blueprints or maps. These come in metal, plastic, pressed wood, and heavy-duty cardboard.

  • Mobile or Wallhanging pad unit

An effective means of storing prepared pads vertically is to hang them on a commercially available hanging unit. There are two types – one is attached to a wall while the other is a mobile, frame unit with wheels. The pads simply drape across moveable “arms” similar to trouser hangers found in many men’s clothing stores or home clothes closets.

Storing and Protecting Prepared Flip Charts

  • Compartmentalized cardboard storage boxes

These commercially produced products are a space-saving way to store rolled flipchart pads or loose pages and charts. You can store your charts in cardboard shipping canisters for added protection, then insert them into the storage unit, or roll them into approximately a four-inch roll. If stored without a canister, put a rubber band at either end of the pad to keep them securely rolled. This will also help prevent damage when placing them into or removing them from the storage unit.

For easy identification, write the name of the course for which the flip chart is used on the cardboard backings of each pad so that it can be read without unrolling them. An alternative for identifying loose pages is to number each storage compartment, then create a wall-mounted diagram that shows what charts are stored in each compartment.

For additional ideas on how to make, use, carry and store flip charts, get a copy of The Big Book of Flip Charts: A Comprehensive Guide for Presenters, Trainers and Team Facilitators.

Learn All About Robert W. ‘Bob’ Lucas Now and 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.

Three Tips for Writing Effectively on Flip Charts

Three Tips for Writing Effectively on Flip Charts

Three Tips for Writing Effectively on Flip Charts

Some trainers and educators struggle when writing on flip chart paper mounted on an easel. With a bit of planning and practice, most people can quickly master this classic visual aid for gathering and presenting information to a group.

Three Tips for Writing Effectively on Flip Charts by The Creative Trainer – Robert W. Lucas, Awarding Winning Adult Training Author

The following are three tips that can help you become master flip chart use in no time.

  • Choose your words carefully.  Limit the use of jargon, which may not be familiar to all participants, and when using acronyms and abbreviations, be sure to fully explain any unfamiliar terms applied.
  • Always write across the pages in a level horizontal line.  If you tend to have difficulty with this, consider buying flipchart paper with lines or grids on them or drawing faint lines on the pages with a ruler and pencil at three to five-inch intervals.
  • Ensure that your lettering is large enough to be read. One and one-half to two-inch letters are usually visible for most people. A rule of thumb is that by increasing the height of your lettering size 1/4 inch, you will be increasing visibility by approximately 8-10 feet. See the following chart to get an idea of how this can increase visibility for attendees.

Added Height of Lettering

¼”                    ½”                    ¾”                    1”                     1 ¼”                1 ½”

Viewing Distance in Feet

8-10ft              16-20ft            24-30ft            32-40ft            40-50ft           48-60ft

Flip charts continue to be a viable low-tech form of visual aid for gathering and presenting information in virtually any group setting if they are used effectively.  Like any tool, you should become proficient in its use before participants arrive in your sessions.