Bang! Zoom! Crackle!
These are some of the sounds we heard over the weekend around the 5th November. Many of us (in Great Britain for the most part) participated in the annual commemoration of Guy Fawkes’ Night A.K.A. Bonfire Night!
Crowds gathered at local events to enjoy an evening of fireworks and fire fun!
Their eyes gazed upwards in anticipation of the next bang and burst of colour to light up the starry autumn night. As each firework exploded, the crowd cheered and clapped with “ooohs! ahhs! And wows!” It’s a night to remember on the 5th November!
What can we learn from this annual event when it comes to creating online courses and videos for learning? How can you give your learners their “oooh, ahh and wow” moments?
Here are five elearning tips to use in honour of 5 November.
1. Ignite interest
Before launching the courses / going live, pique their interest. Tell them what they’ll learn, how and, most important, what’s in it for them. This is a marketing exercise and involves generating awareness, intrigue and interest about your online courses. Whether your learners are employees, external delegates or students: get that interest ignited!
2. Spark your learners’ imagination
When they start a course, the first aim is to spark their imagination. Then keep those sparks firing throughout. Ensure they’re engaged with the learning from the word go. How to achieve that? One way is to create a scenario that places your learner inside it to get them thinking. Carry that scenario through the course as much as possible. That continuation will draw on their imagination further.
3. Add colour to your e-learning design
Like fireworks that light up the sky, this elearning tip is about using a complementary colour pallet to light your learners’ screens. Let colour enhance the look and feel of your course and draw attention to the learning content. Don’t only use your favourite colours. Instead think about the following:
- Do you want to use colours that represent your business brand?
- Are there specific colours that your learners will connect with?
- Will your courses include content which conveys any emotions? For example, red can be vibrant, or represent danger. Yellow typically represents happiness.
4. Use a variety of e-learning layouts and interactions
A fireworks display is more than a series of rockets fired one after the other. There’s a variety of fireworks. Each one has a different explosive effect and different sounds. Some “whoosh” into the sky. Others “bang!” so loud you have to cover your ears.
Now I’m not saying you should download a bunch of firework sound effects and add them to your course. But you should vary the way you design each screen of your course or video. Think different layout and different interaction. Have a set of seven or eight different layouts and interactions and use one of these every few screens. This variety will help to achieve continuous engagement for your learners on every screen and give them something new to do.
5. Create a crowd for your elearning course
For me, the main thing that makes a firework display a night to remember is, the crowd itself. Everyone there is part of a community. The collective “oohs, ahhs and wows!” give the event a spirit as warm as the bonfire itself. And that helps us all to enjoy the event.
In the same way, online learning is even more effective when you learn with other people. So think about creating a community to give your learners that extra level of support.
- Can you set up some discussions forums in your learning management system?
- How about a live Q&A session?
- What about creating a Closed Facebook Group.
- Schedule a learning hour on Twitter with a specific hashtag for users to follow and engage in
All these elearning tips will give your learners a place to share, ask and emit a collective “Ooh, ahh or wow!”
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