Practical Pointers for Facilitating
Preparing for facilitating
- Watch other facilitators whenever you get a chance. What do they do that you might like to try?
- When you facilitate, if possible, arrange the tables in a horseshoe or herringbone pattern. This creates an informal setting and allows people to see each other as they speak.
- Make sure you can easily find and sort through your handouts when you need them. If you prepare them on different coloured papers, you’ll be able to tell one handout from the other. Or, you could fasten them together with a paper clip or something else that is easy to remove.
- Always test your equipment and check that you have all the necessary cords for your equipment.
- Be sure you have all the necessary materials, handouts and resources.
- When using videotapes, always preview the portion you are going to use and give tutors a reason for viewing it.
- Set the mood with music, inspirational posters or quotes, and icebreakers.
- One of the toughest jobs is deciding what absolutely must be included and what – even though it seems important – will have to wait for another time.
- Add together the following to figure out the time the session will take:
- the total length of each presentation and/or activity
- 5 to 10 minutes at the beginning of each session for review and to preview
- 10 to 15 minutes at the end of each session to recap what was covered, review any homework assignment, and give the participants a chance to reflect on what they learned
- 15 to 20 minutes per three-hour session for transition activities and breaks
- Allow time for group discussions and opportunities for practice. This is often where the real learning takes place. It also gives you a chance to see how well tutors understand the concepts you are covering.
- Build time in for sharing if some tutors have tutoring experience.