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Classroom to Computer: Activity #1

Classroom to Computer: Activity #1

Many feel that the classroom experience can never be replicated over the computer. While to some extent, that's true, learners can get much the same experience from an eLearning course as they can in a face-to-face setting. How can they do this? This series will look at different ILT/classroom activities and discuss how to replicate them on the computer in an eLearning setting.

Let's take a look at our first example!

I recently worked with a client who had an awesome in-person introduction to their company culture, which they referred to as their "Brand Soul." This ILT consisted of a LOT of group interaction. Their employees are mainly millennials and under, so they're youthful and energetic. But as the company continues to expand globally, they needed to convert this course to an online solution. But they didn't want to lose that energy that makes them who they are. So how could we recreate the in-classroom experience on the computer?

One particular activity they thought they couldn't replicate was the Marshmallow Challenge. In the classroom, learners were provided with spaghetti noodles, tape, marshmallows and string. In groups of 3-4, they had to work together to build the tallest free-standing structure they could. The point of the activity was to show that often times, we don't get things right on our first try, but we part of their company culture is to keep trying until they come up with something great. What a fun activity! Now...how would we translate that onto the computer, with no spaghetti noodles, no marshmallows and no partners in crime.

It all goes back to thinking about the principle behind the activity. Since it was all about having a "relentless" attitude - about trying and not giving up - we wanted something that would convey the same idea, that would allow the learner to try different ideas. The solution? A series of brainteasers with only 60 seconds to complete as many as they could. The brainteasers allow the learner to think of multiple solutions to the problem and try out different options. Of course, we had to limit the time so they wouldn't spend hours on the computer trying to get it right, but the activity itself conveyed the same message, and it was just what the client was looking for!

This course was full of fun activities and interactions that mimicked the in-class experience, including the brainteaser we shared, allowing learners to create their own custom-made thank you notes to show an appreciative attitude, and many more.

While it's true you can never truly replace the peer-to-peer interaction, discussions and activities, of an ILT course, you can keeping in mind the principles that inspired them.

Do you have a classroom activity you'd like to transform to the computer?

Email us your activity and we'll transform it to an online experience in one of our upcoming posts!

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