Resources for Trainers, Train the trainer opportunities

Let’s “Play, Learn, Innovate”

A few of us are going to get together at NEKLS on Tuesday, June 7th, to participate in the free OCLC symposium, “Play, Learn Innovate”. If you’re nearby, you’re welcome to join us (bring your lunch – we’re doing this brown bag style).

Looking at the title of this symposium and the descriptions of the sessions, I feel happy. I know it’s going to be interesting and probably inspiring. It makes me feel good to think about it. As a creator of learning opportunities, I am going to try to remember this feeling and to make it a goal to inspire it in people who are attending workshops, trainings, and meetings that I help coordinate. If play is the way to the future, then the learning opportunities that help prepare us for that future should be enjoyable, too!

Patron Training, Train the trainer opportunities

Technology Concepts Made Simple – a webinar

I love the Common Craft videos. They so “get it”… the way people learn, the things people need to know to get started, etc. I aspire to be like them in the training I put together, too.

TechSoup for Libraries is hosting a webinar next week, during which Stephanie Gerding will be interviewing Lee LeFever from Common Craft. I think it’s one I don’t want to miss.

Active Learning, Active Training, Train the trainer opportunities

Ye Old Snowball Fight

I don’t think I have talked about the snowball fight as a training technique here on the blog, but it’s a favorite. Stephanie Gerding and I talked about it in yesterday’s MaintainIT train-the-trainer webinar and Paul Signorelli liked the idea and described it quite well over on the Infoblog. Thanks for the great post,  Paul,  and thanks as always to Stephanie for being an inspiration.

Library staff development, Patron Training, Train the trainer opportunities

In the Club

Talking technology

It has been a long time since I belonged to a living, breathing, get together and eat chocolate and talk literature kind of book club. I’d like to be part of one again someday, but for now, non-work time needs to be focused on dissertation — writing it, defending it; too many y-e-a-r-s of life have been about it; ready to be done.

I do get to be regularly involved with a different sort of book club, however.  Every month I participate in a technology book club discussion for MaintainIT. We choose a chapter from one of the MaintainIT Cookbooks and then gather online to discuss it.

I like it as a technology learning format. In the fall of 2003, I published an article in Computers in Libraries magazine called, “Everything you need to know about training you learned in summer reading programs”. I had observed the organization and collaboration and energy that happened around summer reading programs (in large libraries and in small) and wished, Why can’t we do that with technology training?

A lot has happened in the years in between then and now. I love the creativity and innovation happening, with interesting, large-scale technology training programs and smaller efforts, too. One of the very best examples is the influential Learning 2.0 program aka “23 Things”. Helene Blowers has discussed the similarities between 23 Things and summer reading program. Lori Reed wisely pointed out to me that technology book clubs really are like the 23 Things style learning activities. As she said, “the ideal technology training session would always consist of self study followed by an in-person session where learners have the opportunity to ask questions and get a deeper understanding of the technology.”

At NEKLS, we started an online book discussion related to technology titles, too. There are so many possibilities, I think. If you’re doing some sort of technology book club, I’d love to hear about it (in the comments or email me please)!

Trainers will be talking about this idea of using book clubs for technology learning in next week’s MaintainIT train-the-trainer webinar. Sign-up if you would like to join the discussion (it’s free).

And if you’re going to be at the California Library Association conference in San Jose next week, I’ll be presenting on this topic there, too (“Not on Oprah’s List: The MaintainIT Project’s Technology Book Clubs”). Stop by and say ‘hi’!

Resources for Trainers, Train the trainer opportunities, Uncategorized

Good bye Monterey!

Every time I go to Monterey for the Internet Librarian conference, I decide I am going to find a way to live at the water again. And someday I probably will. For now, I am in San Francisco for work for a couple of days before I return home to Kansas City.

The pre-conference workshop went well. Stephanie is one of my favorite people with whom I get to work. Our slides are available here: The participants in the workshop were great, from really varied work environments, but sharing many similar concerns. It was highly interactive and we even did some speed dating… (I’ll have to post about that training technique here on the blog soon).

I did spend some time on the water, too. Even though there was talk of Great Whites and whales being around, I only got up close and personal with seals, sea lions, and gulls, too.  The water was calm and the sun was shining. Steinbeck’s ghost told us all about the sardine industry in days gone by.

It was my best Internet Librarian yet, I think because so many friends were there. My Kansas, my Minnesota, and my Seattle worlds converged and I got to spend time with Stephanie, Ruth, Sharon, Chris, Brian, Michael, Scott, Michele, Charlene, David, Sam, and more.  I went to a couple of sessions that I plan to post about over the next few days, but for now just wanted to share the pre-conference slides and wave good-bye down Hwy 101. Until next year!

Active Learning, Resources for Trainers, Train the trainer opportunities

Pre-conference at Internet Librarian

One week from today, Stephanie Gerding and I will be presenting a preconference at Internet Librarian in Monterey. The session is called “The Accidental Trainer”.


If you are like most “accidental” library technology trainers, you are expected to take on computer training in your library, often with little or no previous experience or instruction. This workshop addresses the most common concerns of newly minted technology trainers, recommends great tools and techniques, and shares helpful advice from many years of coordinating and providing training for libraries of all types around the country. If you are responsible for technology training — whether in computer labs, classrooms, or one-on-one with library users or staff — join us for this workshop. You will learn why learning styles are important, how to create a learning community, strategies for communicating about technology, techniques for using activities, storytelling, and case studies to increase learning and retention.

Can’t wait to be in Monterey, to work with Stephanie, and to see other friends, too. Plus OCEAN!

Resources for Trainers, Train the trainer opportunities

Stories and technology training

“Do you tell stories?”

Every month MaintainIT conducts a train-the-trainer webinar, where we talk about using MaintainIT resources in the technology training you are doing. We also share training tips and techniques with one another. This month we’re going to focus on stories as a technology training device. You’re welcome to register and participate in the webinar . If you have any thoughts or examples regarding stories as a technology training device, I’d love to hear them so I can share them with the group. Please share them here in the comments!

Resources for Trainers, Train the trainer opportunities

There’s something happening here…

I feel like there’s a buzz in the air. Trainers, joining together, talking, collaborating….

There’s the Google Group “Library Learning.” The MaintainIT webinars for trainers (next one is Oct 8th) have been some of our most popular. And now T is for Training podcasts are being offered on a regular basis.  There’s one tomorrow! When: Friday September 26th Time: 2 pm Eastern   I’m going to try to phone in.

Resources for Trainers, Tools for trainers, Train the trainer opportunities

That was fun!

For trainers
For trainers

MaintainIT hosts monthly webinars for trainers. We talk about MaintainIT resources and share ideas for using them in training.  Today’s session was really fun (recording here) — lots of great people there, chatting about what makes online training work. There were people at the session attending their first ever online event and others who have presented online many times. One of the things I was most impressed with was everyone’s focus on the user… on the attendee experience. I know it might seem obvious, but when I was researching online presentations, most of the information I found focused on fonts and graphics and really specific details about how to make the presentation look. Great info and important stuff, but secondary.