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  • Writer's pictureSumbella

Empowering Webinar Facilitation

[#facilitation✨🙋🏻‍♀️] What do you do when you don’t get a reply to the question you pose in an online webinar, or a big group during a workshop? Here are some tips I thought might be helpful for you, fresh off a Cambridge University Press Education #PreparingtoTeach Masterclass with Annie Altamirano! ✨

💡Tip #1️⃣: Remember, it’s not personal!

Especially in an online webinar format, where participants cannot see each other, let alone know who each other is. With big questions, it takes time to prepare thoughts sometimes! And people can be shy, too. Don't panic. You got this, because you...

💡Tip #2️⃣: ...Expect radio silence, and plan for it.

It’s important to have a backup plan if nobody answers: what is your Plan B........................? Having a mind blank? Never fear, read on...

💡Tip #3️⃣: Answer the question yourself

My favourite, simple, easy way to handle this moment of silence is to volunteer to share your own thoughts. Even if you’ve been the one talking for a long time, it is better than hearing silence (both as a facilitator & an attendee) at that crucial “any questions!?” moment! Leave lots of pauses for questions to roll in while you're riffing - they often do.

💡Tip #4️⃣: Have some aswers to questions ready beforehand or even on screen to click through.

Hat tip to Steve Hacker, who I learned this from. This is a wonderful way to share best practice on answers to questions that many teachers encounter.

💡Tip #5️⃣: If you have a co-host with you, prepare them to body-double as a curious participant:

Support staff are often hovering, there to help. Prep them before and you have a great way to unlock some of your own thoughts on pertinent questions in a session, while keeping energy & attention flowing. It is also excellent to weave the sound of another voice into the conversation: it provides contrast & a change of pace - these are important parts of sustaining engagement in both online and in person workshops.

👩🏻‍🏫 In today’s session, we flipped a question for Annie to answer, and she shared the most valuable insight! She spoke about what she loves most about #CambridgeGlobalEnglish resources in how they support her with doing Assessment for Learning & Differentiation in her sessions - two of her favourite topics. As an author and a trainer, she has so much to share with us, and by answering her own question, it gave us a glimpse into her passion for these two important topics. Thank you Annie! 🙏🏼

🙏🏼 A special thanks also to all the teachers from around the world who joined this masterclass and are in process of their own up-skilling journey. Next step… delivering workshops in their school settings! Let's cheer them on! 💪🏾

P.S. 📣 If you are a school using Cambridge resources & interested in up-skilling for yourself or your team with these materials, let's make it happen - do reach out to me 🙋🏻‍♀️

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