By Nicki Davey, Master TetraMap Facilitator
Look at these two sets of learners and imagine that each group is on a training course.
Group 1 looks at lots of PowerPoint slides and does lots of listening while the trainer talks. The environment is bland and corporate. They are static and only move around during breaks, when they eat sugar-laden snacks, drink caffeine-laden drinks, and eat lots of bread and cakes at lunchtime. The occasional group-work activities involve discussing topics, writing their thoughts on flipcharts and then feeding it back to the group. They also do individual work where they complete sections of a workbook. The workbooks are in black and white and are mainly made up of lots of dense text.
Group 2 conducts lots of activities where they move around, use all of their senses, talk to and learn from each other, and solve problems together. This builds a supportive community so they share freely and learn from each other’s ideas and experiences. They discover what they need to learn within themselves. The environment is relaxing and stimulates their curiosity and creativity. They are engaged in a physical, intellectual, emotional and spiritual level and they have vivid, memorable experiences. They nibble on healthy snacks throughout the day, and lunch is light, fresh, and packed with brain-friendly foods (see right-hand panel)
Now consider – which group will stay most alert and engaged, create the strongest memories, learn at a deeper level, and put more of its learning into practice?
Developments in neuroscience and behavioural psychology give us amazing insights into how the brain works, how people learn, and the environmental factors which influence learning. We can use this understanding to design and deliver what is termed Accelerated Learning or Brain-Friendly Learning. There are many elements to take on board, but some key aspects to pay attention to are:
Some trainers and facilitators may shy away from using these approaches, particularly with senior managers. However all the evidence shows that training which gives people the opportunity and permission to explore, play, and experiment, whatever their age, position, or level of authority, is essential to real, deep learning, and we all have a responsibility to put these approaches into practice. Learn how and build your confidence through our Transforming Training courses, or use TetraMap to create engaging, inspiring learning experiences.