from Master Trainer, Ethel S. Keeley
The best trainer is one who has had some experience in the classroom with the
students and can give integration and implementation tips as the training
progresses. Here are a few other ways to pick up these tips:
(1) Give all of the people trained your e-mail address and encourage them to
write with ideas that they have incorporated into the games.
(2) Offer the training as part of a graduate credit with follow up
activities. For graduate credit in North Dakota you need to have 15 hours of
time. I count the day of training as 8 hours and then have 7 hours of follow up.
During these hours the participants review the material again (this is good
since the material is covered so quickly during the day of training.), and then
they write a plan of how they are going to implement the game into the
classroom. This "extra" discussion time is very valuable because they then begin
to create ideas for integration into the different curriculum areas. Also,
sometimes they need to adapt the game to fit certain classes or time schedules.
Another benefit is that they now incorporate the sessions of the games into
current career activities that they are presently using.
Encourage participants during training sessions to incorporate the games into
other career activities and programs that they are now using. This not only
integrates all career materials, but also strengthens them.
One important point that I always make in training: The Game is not the end
product and does not stand alone. It is a means to an end. In other words, the
games are a resource used to meet objectives and competencies. I do this because
many states and local school districts have standards, learning objectives, and
student competencies that must be met. The games are then a means to meet these.
The response has been very favorable since they are often looking for materials
to meet these standards. For example, I did a project with one district wherein
I took all of their standards and student competencies and linked them to The Real Game
and The Make It Real Game. When I finished they could easily see that
these games would meet at least 80% of their competencies. A bargain in resource
money when you consider that one product can accomplish so much.
I have also linked the games to the local/state career clusters. For example,
West Virginia has what they refer to as Programs of Study (which are in effect
career clusters). For the Be Real Game I created a document that links all of
the Role Profiles to the West Virginia Program of Studies. In addition, when I
did the training for Get Real, I crosswalked the posters of the Career Selection
Clusters to West Virginia and created a new activity to mesh with their current
clusters. It is my personal belief that the more customization that we can do
for the states and the local school districts, the better the training.
Marketing needs to be a feature of every training session. For obvious
reasons, marketing is a significant component of the train-the-trainer sessions.
One can show how the games can be integrated into the various disciplines. As
the training progresses, each session should be linked to the different
curricular areas, such as language arts, math, social studies, etc.
Accountability is a huge factor for local school districts and also states.
Pointing out all of the assessment components of each game is also a way of
selling that game. For example, last spring New Mexico contacted me about the
possibility of using Be Real in their newly revised Youth Program. The Summer
Youth JTPA program (out of Job Service) was dissolved, and a new program with
year long efforts was funded. This new program has a long list of accountability
factors. New Mexico faxed me that information on the accountability as stated in
the Workforce Investment Act (WIA), and I sent them information showing how The Be Real
would meet all of the criteria. In addition, I created another assessment tool
for them (customization again). Since accountability is increasing for everyone,
we should be promoting this feature.
Trainers should be responsible for "selling" the product. This can be done
through several avenues: (1) Presenting information on The Real Game series to
the state CRN Director (the new Career Resource
Network), the state School-to-Work director, the state Tech Prep director, the state
Career and Technical Education director, state vocational departments.
(2) Presentations at conferences, whether local or state, on The Real Game
Series; these could be state education conferences, state counseling association
conferences, state School-to-Work or School-to-Careers meetings. I have used all
of these avenues to get the word out in this state. One point to note, when
these presentations are done, there must be in place prior to the event
information on training sessions. When these presentations are done, and people
are excited, the first question that they have is how and when to get training.
If training is not readily available, the enthusiasm dies.