The various learning techniques we use throughout our programs are all well known and have documented positive results concerning the outcome in learning processes. By understanding more about these techniques we believe that our trainers will be better prepared and feel safer when guiding the groups through our sessions and activities.
Brainstorming is a great way to generate new ideas and it is also very effective in finding solutions to problems. A brainstorming technique encourages the participants to suggest as many ideas as possible on a given issue or a question. It invites them to express any thoughts they might have about the topic, without having to worry about how relevant, or connected, they might be.
As the term cooperation suggests, this technique helps participants work together in groups, so that they can learn from each other. It enables individuals to feel close, listen to each other, and be able to explain their own ideas in a clear way. Cooperative learning has been found to increase attendance, time on task, enjoyment of learning, motivation and independence.
Creativity is said to be the expression of intense inner emotions and challenging ideas. Whether it’s art, dance, singing, designing a project plan or conducting a science experiment, it provides young people with an opportunity to demonstrate their individuality and gain self-confidence. Creative expression in education differs in different cultures, but it is considered important to the formation of meaningful relationships, and peaceful, cohesive societies.
Discussion is important because it helps young people process information rather than simply receive it. Our job is to set clear directions for the discussion activity, take on the role of facilitator, and create an environment where everyone feels safe to express their opinion. This is a chance for everyone to share ideas and pool their resources together.
We use the term experiential-based technique when we refer to education where we engage participants in critical thinking, problem solving and decision making in contexts that are relevant to them. Sometimes this is done through a sensory-type of activity, and sometimes just by having time to think, write, or share their thoughts on a particular issue.
Role-playing is a technique that involves assigning a specific role, or character, to each participant and then having them act out a scene or situation, as that character. For example, one participant might pretend to be someone who needs to share an experience with his friend, while the other participant takes on the role of a friend who doesn’t listen or pay attention to what he is telling her/him. Through role playing it becomes easier to discuss complex social issues in a non-threatening environment. It helps participants become aware of their own, and other people’s, behaviors in “real” situations, and by that learn and draw conclusions based on their experience.
Value-based education is a technique that includes these moral aspects, but also the social, emotional, physical, spiritual and intellectual aspects of human development. The purpose of value-based education is to encourage participants to reflect on an issue and take a stand on something; to be able to express and explain their opinions, and to both listen to others and also be listened to in return. This is achieved by getting the group to consider a specific topic, and allowing them to express their thoughts and opinions in an environment, where all comments are welcomed, and everyone is worth listening to.
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