Improve Lectures with Interactive Learning Experiences

Playing Feeling Wheel Game

Jane “Star” Fisher presented to the Austin ASTD ID SIG how adding interaction to training improves attention, retention, and overall learning impact. Despite their effectiveness, why do trainers not use games more often? Why do they persist in boring, death-by-powerpoint slide shows? How can trainers improve their teaching presentations? Star guided the ID SIG members through “Reverse Brainstorming” and “Envelopes” group activities that allowed us to discover our own answers to these questions.

At work, Star is known as the “Game Guru” and is an avid student of Dr. Thiagi, well known expert on making instruction fun with games. Star has over 15 years of experience designing training and 9 years delivering instructor-led courses. She has a Masters of Science in Instructional and Performance Technology. She also earned a CPLP from ASTD.  This recording was made April 25, 2007 with permission.


  • Why are games in training discouraged? (start)
  • Why are competition games unpopular with women (8:50)
  • Introducing Reverse Brainstorm activity (11:48)
  • 2nd round brainstorm with reverse question (18:18)
  • Should we include wrong-way examples in learning? (25:30)
  • Introducing the Envelopes activity (30:30)
  • Can interactive activities foster higher order learning? (41:40)
  • Introducing the Debriefing Circle activity (44:10)
  • Why do some learners (engineers) think they learn better with lectures? (46:30)
  • How can we reinforce learning after the activities? (53:40)

Listen to the recording now. Length 58:40.


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