Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Planning my mini event

I already have written a post about planning my mini event but I needed to write a bit more. Here are my other thoughts about facilitating an event online

how online communication tools can be used to facilitate online;

During one of the illuminate session we had during this course, I have learned that the word facilitate come from the French word “facile” which means easy. I know I should be ashamed of myself not realising it earlier, but better late than ever. So Facilitating means making things easy. When you speak about online facilitating you obviously want to use online tools to make things easy. In order to help the majority of participants I will need to use different tools as varied as possible in order to cater for the different learning types.

You can use Youtube for example as it is a great source of fantastic videos which can support the message you want to pass. For my mini event I intend to show a video from Common Craft which explains without jargon what is a RSS Feed as I will host a hot session about RSS Feed and Diigo.

You can use online surveys before, during ad after a mini event to see what are the needs of your audience and check their feedback. You can use the chat backchannel of Twitter or the one which comes within your virtual room ( as I will be using Adobe Connect Pro I intend to use the chat box to check on the participants at all times). Thus, the host can answer any questions raised or can include/ make feel valued any participants.

Other tools could range from nings, social networks, youtube, emails, social bookmarks.

the process of facilitating an online event.

For my mini event I had two roles. The one of a host and the one of a presenter. Rachel Roberts, my mentor was kind enough to give me a lot of help before the mini event. She spent one hour on the day prior the event, to go through all tips and tricks about Adobe and the virtual room and reminded me to check constantly the chat box. She also looked at my presentation and we checked the video I wanted to show was working well.

We decided to not only use Adobe Connect Pro but also use phones for audio as a lot of schools have a very slow internet connection. This is something that it is vital to keep in mind as in NZ and around the world there are still a lot of people with low internet connection.

I need to point out here that as the mini event was taking place in the closed community I did not need to advertise it in the wide world.


  1. Hi Florence, I commend you on planning to include people with low Internet bandwidth - this is a very real issue with online facilitation.

    Checking in with people as you go along is also a great idea but how will you get feedback from them after the session, in a way that feels safe to them?

    Will you record the event? How will you make the recording available?

  2. Thanks Sarah for your comment. In order to get some feedback from the participants after the session, I could use an online anonymous survey application.

    Yes I will record the event and place the recording on my blog for example, or on a wiki or a Ning. The recording will need to be easily accessible for all the people who participated to the event and to the people who could not attend.