Friday Fresh #6: Maximising Learner Engagement

Hello and welcome to the first cold week of the season and this week’s Friday Fresh focus on getting your learners engaged – a task that can prove challenging, even though we never think it will.
Engagement is the lifeblood of any learning experience. When learners are engaged, they’re not just absorbing information; they’re actively processing, questioning, and applying it. In this edition of Friday Fresh, we delve into the art and science of maximising learner engagement, ensuring that your CPD courses inspire and make a real difference in the workplace.

1. The Power of Storytelling


Every piece of information becomes more memorable when woven into a narrative. Stories captivate our attention, making complex concepts more relatable.
Tip: Incorporate real-life examples, case studies, or anecdotes into your course material.
Insight: A well-told story can bridge the gap between theory and practice, making learning more contextual and relevant.
To show that we practice what we preach, here’s an example of a theoretical information delivery vs. a storytelling approach. The topic is safeguarding (because we love a challenge).

Theoretical Delivery:


Safeguarding refers to the measures and protocols in place to ensure the well-being and safety of individuals, especially children, the elderly, and vulnerable adults. It encompasses protection from physical harm, emotional abuse, exploitation, and neglect. All organisations must have a safeguarding policy in place and ensure regular training for staff.

Storytelling Approach:


Meet Sarah, a dedicated teacher at Sunnyside Elementary. One day, she noticed little Timmy, usually a bubbly 7-year-old, looking withdrawn and spotting a bruise on his arm. Recalling her safeguarding training, she approached him gently, offering a listening ear. Timmy’s revelation about troubles at home set in motion Sunnyside’s safeguarding protocols, ensuring his safety and well-being. Safeguarding isn’t just about policies on paper; it’s about vigilant professionals like Sarah ensuring the safety and well-being of those in their care, from spotting the signs to taking action.

2. Interactive Elements


Passive learning has its limitations. By introducing quizzes, polls, or interactive simulations, you can stimulate active participation.
Tip: Use tools like Kahoot or Quizlet to create engaging quizzes that reinforce key concepts.
Insight: Solving problems by using freshly acquired learning cements the knowledge and helps professionals easily develop it into a skill.

3. Peer Learning Opportunities



Learning is a social activity. Encourage group discussions, peer reviews, or collaborative projects.
Tip: Create breakout sessions or discussion forums where learners can share insights and experiences.
Insight: Peer interactions can offer diverse perspectives, enriching the learning experience. We spoke about this in detail in the 5th edition of the Friday Fresh newsletter. You can re-visit it here.

4. Real-time Feedback

Immediate feedback can guide learners, helping them understand where they excel and where they need to focus.
Tip: Incorporate instant feedback mechanisms in quizzes or assignments.
Insight: Feedback not only corrects misconceptions but also boosts learner confidence.

5. Flexibility in Learning



Every learner is unique. Offering flexible learning paths or self-paced modules can cater to individual preferences and schedules.
Tip: Provide options for learners to choose modules or topics that interest them the most.
Insight: A personalized learning journey can enhance commitment and reduce dropout rates.
In the ever-evolving world of CPD, engagement is the key to ensuring that learning is not just an activity but an experience. By implementing these strategies, you can create courses that resonate, inspire, and truly make a difference.
Stay curious, stay engaged, and until our next Friday Fresh, keep making learning a transformative journey!

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