The art of teaching and group facilitation requires a careful balance of challenge, observation, encouragement, guidance, and the ability to know when to step in to help learners, and when to step back and let them learn through struggling with a problem. Sometimes educators have...

In today's post, I offer another activity that is useful for exploring how complicated communication can be, and how miscommunication arises. This activity is sure to initiate meaningful reflection and dialogue with the groups you work with....

In yesterday's post I shared one of my favorite activities for jumpstarting reflection and conversation with groups about communication and the pitfalls of miscommunication called "Telegraph". Others that I use for this purpose are "Zoom", "Tin Can Pass", and "Communication Break Down" which I...

One of the most fundamental aspects of team-building and developing a positive learning and working environment is effective communication. Communication skills are an incredibly important social-emotional skill necessary for success in the 21st century workplace. Group facilitators and educators often look for activities to practice...

During this "back to school" and fall program kick off time of year educators engage groups in introductory activities, ice-breakers and get to know you activities. Regardless of the types of groups you work with it is useful to have a repertoire of simple and...

On Thursday I shared one of my favorite methods for sparking conversation and building rapport in groups that I call "Team Tally". This group commonalities questionnaire serves as a “get to know you” or group celebration activity that involves friendly competition between teams of students...

To be playful and serious at the same time defines the ideal mental condition.- John Dewey

 

Play, Brain Research and 21st Century Learning

 

We learn some of our most basic life skills through play. Play contributes to the development of one of our most important...

As discussed in the February 2013 article, using postcards, image cards and objects are powerful ways to spark introductory conversations and initiate meaningful individual and group reflection on learning experiences. They are also effective techniques for using metaphor to reflect upon and celebrate the strengths...

This article was originally posted in the fall of 2010. Over the past couple of years I have continued to explore this subject. Here is the updated post: While in graduate school, I had an interesting conversation with Dr. Jasper Hunt, my professor at Minnesota...