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  • Writer's pictureSumbella

Cambridge Network and Learn event in Muscat

[#facilitationtip🙋🏻‍♀️ + #CambridgeMENA] We just wrapped up our #Cambridge #NetworkandLearn event in #Muscat! 🙌🏼

The #teachers in Oman are so lovely and friendly, just like always… When I asked them to pick up and hug their belongings (so that we could move tables), we had a little group of teachers hug each other too! 😭💛 #iLoveOman!

Onward with today’s #facilitationtip, which is about #names.

Reflecting on this session, there is a tiny thing I started to do as a facilitator, and it’s to do with names.

I tried it again today and I noticed a shift in connection and engagement, so I want to share it with you.

A while back, I was a delegate in a training session one time where I had forgotten the names of the new people around me. That made it a bit awkward when trying to discuss things as a group.

That experience prompted me to try something to help alleviate that issue when I am facilitating. So now, if I am the trainer for a group where I know they have all just met, or some don't know each other… sometimes I weave in an instruction into a discussion point like this:

💡“Have a think about [insert question here]with your friend. And if you’ve forgotten your friend’s name, don't worry! Now is a great time to ask them again! Don’t be shy - you only just met!”💡

This little prompt from a facilitator every so often can make a huge difference to the atmosphere on a table.

Here are three reasons why reminding new delegates to learn each other's names seems odd but actually helps boost engagement in training sessions:

1️⃣ It might seem weird to do names mid session but it’s even more weird to be a delegate talking to someone you don’t know the name of!

2️⃣ We often forget how it feels to be sitting at a table when we’re standing ourselves.

3️⃣ Names are so very important and it’s such a boost for everyone to get them right and feel they know who they’re working with - even if they only met 10 minutes ago.

I suppose another point of this post is to say: don’t underestimate the power of your prompts! You can turn the dynamic round on a table just by giving simple prompts, like “see if you remember each other’s names!” to groups that help ease communication.

All in all, this was such a fun session to do at this event today - organised beautifully by Moemen Eissa, we explored Cambridge University Press Education's #Primary & #LowerSecondary #resources with Fatima Awada, updates to all things #CambridgeAssessment and #CheckPoint exams with Ahmad Assaf, pathways to improving #literacy with Marwa Al Samsam, and then #ProfessionalDevelopment too - the whole shebang. 😎 Thank you to Mira Hamati for all her efforts on the marketing front.💛

P.S. Of course, we also encouraged everyone to nominate a #dedicatedteacher! Here’s the link for you to join in: 


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