Presentation or Conversation?

Auditory? Visual? Kinesthetic? How would you describe your learning style?

IMG_2195In a few weeks I’ll get to once again participate in a youth leader event that is different than any others. Open Seattle takes place on Saturday, October 26 at Seattle Pacific University.

One of the things I really like about the premise of Open is that it is geared to reach any and all of the three learning styles. Rather than being “spoken at” for 45 minutes to an hour, the speaker/facilitator of each session will engage his or her own material, but create an atmosphere that engages thought and conversation. Each 40 minute session closes with 10 minutes of interaction between any/all who are in that room. They’ll engage the visual, auditory learners will hear great stuff and perhaps some practical “lab activities” will take place for those hands-on (kinesthetic) learners!

At Open the leadership assumes that the speakers are not the only people with something to say! I love this.

There are about a dozen different options spread out over two different learning tracks (you can switch between the two as well), a long lunch break to engage deeper in conversation and the afternoon ends with something new called “Lightning Rounds” where any/all who attend  are given the opportunity to do their own “mini” session in 5 minutes or less!

I have the privilege of partnering with Adam McLane of the Youth Cartel and serve as “Local Host” for this event.

Snap from 2012 Open Seattle

Snap from 2012 Open Seattle

This is such a great opportunity to have your entire team trained. Seriously, one Saturday could supply your entire year of monthly trainings for your youth staff. Have a different leader assigned to take notes at a session of choosing and then divide them up over the course of the year and have them facilitate a staff discussion about these important teen-ministry issues!

Here is the website and registration page! Totally worth the $25 investment! In short, open is more of a conversation than a series of presentations! I hope you’ll join the conversation!



4 thoughts on “Presentation or Conversation?

  1. This is a great event. I have trained myself to be an auditory learner, thanks to podcasting and audio books, but I am a active individual too. I’m not sure of my complete learning style, but I love the discussions that take place at Open Seattle. It’s very invigorating.

  2. Sounds great! My problem with discussion workshops though is that they often become dominated by the audience asking questions that are specific to their situations. I went to the SYM conference last year and attended the Jon Acuff session because it was on a topic that I was very interested in (and it’s Jon Acuff!) Out of his 10 or so points he only got to #2 because the audience discussion just dominated the entire workshop.

    I know there is value in discussion, but there is a time when I’m in the room to hear from the speaker and not so much of the audience.

    1. DJ, I know the way that I lead in these types of sessions is not to allow for “everyone listen to the one person” but I get people to discuss in groups of 3-5 for 2-3 minutes and then the wrap up at the end is open to all. But rest-assured, the speaker still gets through his or her material at Open. Or at least this was the case last year and I know that is what we’ve put out there as the hope/expectation! Thanks for the comment!

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