Introduction Activity

 

An activity that allows the whole group to agree what will make the session successful

 
*You will need Flip chart and a marker pen, really good listening skills.
 

Time: 10 – 20 minutes

 
Why do we like it?

It gives the group ownership, allows you to tailor the session to their needs and preferences, it
makes it clear that you are listening to them and that they are involved in a participative process.

How does it work?

  • Sit the group in a circle.
  • Explain that you want the group to decide what they want and need to make the group work for them.
  • Give some examples of the kind of things you mean: Do they want breaks? How long do they want to meet? Do they want games and activities or serious discussions? Ask what they want you to do as facilitator, what they want to opportunity to do themselves and what they want the rest of the group to do to make the session successful. Remind them that the session has to achieve the aims already set out – you should have these write up and displayed.
  • Tell them they have 3 minutes to find out from the people on either side of them what they want from the group to make it work.
  • Whilst they are talking go around to the pairs and start to collect some of their ideas. As this is the first time you have asked them to speak it is really important that you go to each pair and ask them for their contributions rather than ask them to call them out in front of the whole group.
  • After 3 minutes feedback the ideas you have collected.
  • Prompt them to suggest any other ideas.
  • Make sure you’ve included ideas about how they will treat each other, and how they will listen and respect each others ideas. These normally come from the group, but they may need some prompting.
  • Now check that everyone in the group agrees to this as a way of working. Display it for the session and refer back to it if you feel that the session is not going well.

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