You have probably experienced throughout your life that most teachers and trainers do most of the talking while the participants sit passively and listen...or space out...or play on their phones. In fact, we at Sage River Media have observed that it it typical for a trainer to talk over 95% of the time. For true learning to occur, students need to be ENGAGED! And TikTalk is a great way to measure learner engagement! Here's the bottom line: a trainer should be talking no more than 50% of the time. If a trainer is speaking more than 50% of the time, more thought should be put in to designing more engaging learning activities.
Is it even possible to have some many learning activities that the trainer is speaking less than 50% of the time? YES! In fact, we worked with one Chief Operating Officer who wanted to teach his top leaders a specific process for decision making. We designed a variety of learning activities that he could utilize in his three-hour training seminar. When we observed his training, we tracked how much time he spoke compared to how much time the participants spoke. He only talked 6% of the time! That is the best we have seen so far! We we surveyed the managers afterwords, many of them wrote that it was the most effective and most engaging training they had attended in their entire lives!
Use TikTalk to see how well you are doing. If you need help designing a wide variety of highly engaging learning activities, let us know!
Here is how it works: when the trainer starts talking, push or click on the "T" button. This will start the timer to keep track of how much time the trainer is speaking. When one of the learners is talking, push or click on the "L" button. That will stop the "trainer" clock and start the "learner" clock. Each time the person speaking changes, click the corresponding button, even if that person is only talking for a few seconds. If the trainer gets creative and designs a learning activity where the class is divided into groups, click the "L" button, then click the number corresponding with the number of groups. If the trainer has the class divided into five groups, the "learner" clock will go fives times as fast.
Notice there are also buttons for Video, Breaks, and Noise. Noise is anything that happens in the class that does not directly relate to learning. For example, if the trainer takes 15 minutes getting everyone logged into to the software to be trained on, that's noise. If it takes 4 minutes to hand out worksheets, that's noise. Noise cannot be totally eliminated, but it can often be significantly reduced with proper planning.