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Here is an example of a well-designed active learning breakout session (used with permission by Al Trujillo from his “Introduction to On Course” breakout session):
Breakout Session Design: Introduction: What activity or activities will you use to engage your attendees when they enter your breakout session?
I plan to do an opening activity where the participants come up with a quick list of the qualities/characteristics of successful students. Then they do hand-up, stand-up activity to share their ideas. Then we do a shout-out and I put several of the qualities on the board. As we watch Skip Downing discuss the 8 qualities of successful students, I circle the qualities/characteristics from the group that match Skip’s 8 qualities of successful students.
Breakout Session Design: Active Learning Segment: What active learning strategy or strategies will you employ in your breakout session? This should be the majority of the breakout session where your attendees are actively participating. Note that this cannot be a lecture; rather, treat your attendees as your students in an active learning classroom.
The entire session involves a variety of active learning techniques (60-minute session):
- Introduction (2 minutes)
- Quicklist of qualities/characteristics of successful students (5 minutes)
- Hand-up, Stand-up activity (5 minutes)
- Shout-out activity (5 minutes)
- Skip’s video/8 qualities of successful students (8 minutes)
- How On Course is different (5 minutes)
- On Course success and retention data (10 minutes)
- On Course Web resources (10 minutes)
- Wrap-up, applications of using the techniques shown here in other disciplines, and evaluation (10 minutes)
Breakout Session Design: Conclusion (Application): How will you conclude your breakout session to focus on helping your attendees apply this technique in their own classrooms?
As a wrap-up and debrief session, I plan to do a group discussion about how the participants can use, modify, and/or adapt the techniques demonstrated in the session in other disciplines. I also plan to share some ideas about how I’ve used these techniques in my own classes.