The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences

Group Facilitation workshop with Darin Eich, Ph.D., Founder of InnovationLearning.org

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As part of MLDP, we encourage student participants to attend other Rockefeller Center programs in order to enrich their Dartmouth experience. Read a student account of a Rockefeller Center program, and for more information about MLDP, click here.  
As a UGA and a leader within an organization, I have to lead meetings. But I’d always feel nervous and unsure of what to do when facilitating meetings. I’d plan what I had to say but in the end, it became a boring lecture. So when my Community Director shared with me the Group Facilitation workshop, I jumped at the chance to improve interest levels during my meetings. Darin Eich, Ph.D., Founder of InnovationLearning.org shared various activities for effective facilitation. Instead of explaining how to execute them, he demonstrated them throughout his workshop. He began with his introduction and advised us to call on attendees because asking for volunteers takes too long. We could also use a poll to learn our audience’s interest to better tailor the information to their needs. There was also the Reverse Poll where people stood up and if they agreed with a statement, they could sit down. He used this to demonstrate how many people we already knew at the workshop. He had us list ideas for workshops we wanted to lead and had us share them. He called this Brainrain and Think-Pair-Share. Putting his advice to use, we all planned quick workshops to present there. Using the Reverse Poll and Role Play, I engaged my audience more than I could have had I just given them the information. At the end, he showed us the agenda he had prepared for this workshop with the activities listed. As I looked through it, I realized that activities during workshops are not spontaneous. They require careful planning. What activities can YOU use to keep your listeners interested? --Written by Victoria Li ’16, MLDP Winter 2014 Participant

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The Nelson A. Rockefeller Center for Public Policy and the Social Sciences