Flip Charts – The Facilitator’s Friend
Those of you who know me, are aware I don’t like them too much as they tend to be badly used and the user is the one under the spotlight – when it’s the group that should be the centre of it all. (Use of Pinboards instead – will follow next week.)
However, we do use them and they can be a great tool. Let’s look at just some of the good skills (sorry – in a blog I can’t list them all here – even if I knew them all!)
You can note your script with a light pencil on the chart.The group can’t see it but you can. If drawing is not your strength, you can project an image onto the flip chart sheet and draw it – as above.
You can tab pre-prepared sheets to save fumbling through looking for the right one. You can draw a brightly coloured border for impact.
- Don’t talk while looking at the chart. Write, then speak but beware the long silences when you are busy writing and the group are
- Write legibly and big enough to be read from a distance. Unless you are creating a graphic, beware of too much colour. With a word list, 3 should be the maximum.
- Ask a question and wait for the response – if it’s slow in coming, wait.
- When you turn over to the next page, what you have done before is hidden. Should it be displayed and visible?
Use the correct pens. Use ones that have a decent ink flow. Even a new pen can seem to run out quickly and only works well again when rested with the nib down. I recommend Neuland No.One® and Neuland BigOne® The ink flow (big choice of colours) is excellent, they can easily be refilled and the nibs can be replaced. The wedge nib gives a bold, firm, clear mark.
Use the right flip chart easel. Not too low, not falling to bits. Best to use one where the working area can be raised for ease of writing lower down and better
visibility for the group.
The picture in this blog shows a Sketch@work – it’s a table and a flip chart (portrait or landscape), height adjustable and tiltable!
If the paper you are using does not have a perforation, just score with a pin and tear off.
Next week – Pinboards. The why’s and wherefores.