Flipcharts can be wonderful aids for trainers but they can also be a delegate’s worst nightmare. You need to make sure you use them in the right way, so here are our top tips to up your flipchart game:
Before the training begins
- Place the flipchart where all delegates can see. Check for yourself whether delegates at the back can actually read it as there is nothing more frustrating than an exercise conducted via a flipchart and only two thirds of the room can see enough to participate.
- Check you have enough pages for the training session you are going to deliver and that the last person to use it hasn’t left all their scribbling across every page.
- Check that your flipchart pens actually write and are not about to dry up. It can also help to have a good selection of colours.
- Prepare titles/content on the flip chart pages in advance of the training beginning. If it helps, also write small prompts in pencil on each page. You will be able to see and read these, but none of your delegates will.
When delivering the training
- Ensure each flipchart you create has a title – bordered or underlined.
- Use bullet points when creating a list.
- Use at least two colours but avoid writing in red (use it for underlining and emphasis only).
- Characters should be approximately 10cm high.
- Avoid writing full sentences or too much information.
- Have a (secret) supply of quality marker pens.
- If you are artistic – use this skill.
- Never talk to the flipchart.
- If your handwriting is poor – ask for a volunteer and get a delegate to write on the flipchart.
- Put poor spelling down to ‘flipchart dyslexia’ – a genuine condition!
Flipchart horrors to avoid!
- Dragging the flipchart to bring it closer to delegates during an exciting discussion but dragging causes the legs to fall off.
- Leaning on the flipchart to make your point and then knocking the whole thing over.
- Nominating a delegate to write on the flipchart only to discover they can’t spell or you can’t read their writing. Never nominate anyone to write on the flipchart
for you. Ask for volunteers.
We normally include one or two flipchart exercises in our training materials – fun, interactive exercises that get delegates working together. We hope these top tips will give you some ideas for using flipcharts in your own training sessions.
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