Facilitator Guides as Living Agendas: Community Insights (+ a party playlist 🥳)

On June 15th, our community of facilitators joined the P2PU Team to learn how to make effective facilitator guides, which are weekly agendas that help facilitators adapt online courses, take collective notes, and save helpful resources. Facilitators can use these guides to plan their learning circle sessions, and they provide a great reflection opportunity when a learning circle ends. They provide a clear format that helps keep the work of facilitation manageable, and they’re exceptionally helpful for first-time facilitators.

We were joined by Deb Estrella from Tiverton Public Library, who created a facilitator guide for Sign School’s American Sign Language course that includes flashcards and roleplaying activities for learners.

Deb shared that leading a group of strangers through an unfamiliar subject was out of her comfort zone, and having a facilitator guide helped her plan timings for videos and activities. The facilitator guide was like a “dress rehearsal” that helped her feel more confident planning her sessions.

Deb also shared how the facilitator guide shaped learners’ perception of her as a peer. Learners saw her using the facilitator guide each session as a living agenda: they saw her taking notes, asking questions, and incorporating their feedback week to week, and they could view the agenda as a flexible plan they had the power to change. It affirmed to learners that she wasn’t there as an expert – she was there as a co-learner. Deb recommended using the facilitator guide to schedule as much hands-on, in-session practice during learning circles as possible. Lecture videos can be watched anywhere, but interaction in person is valuable.

Other community members in our call emphasized the importance of delegating responsibility to learners, which is easier to do with a facilitator guide that helps make the learning experience more transparent and manageable to a new facilitator.

Our attendees also contributed songs to P2PU’s Party Playlist – listen to it on Spotify! 🥳

Want to learn more about facilitator guides? Visit our Knowledge Base for an overview of facilitator guides along with our template for making your own. See all of our current facilitator guides on our Learning Resources page!

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