The Learner and The Advisor
Purpose of this activity: Allow participants to leverage previous experiences and apply new concepts through problem-solving with a partner. This activity can also be used to help practice advising or consulting skills.
Overview: Participants identify a dilemma to discuss. Each participant plays the role of Learner or Advisor. Each person will be the Learner for two rounds and the Advisor for two rounds.
Total Time: 30 minutes
Materials: Participants will need paper and writing implement to take notes
- Participants identify a dilemma related to your topic. (3 minutes)
- Identify a question you want help answering
- Write out a scenario you do not know how to address
- What would you ask an expert in (your field/this topic)? Write out your question.
- Part 1: Round 1 of advising (5 minutes)
- Ask the group to form two circles, one inside the other (like speed dating or networking). Each participant is to pair up with the person across from them. The inner circle acts as the Learners, the outer, the Advisors.
- Instructions to the group:
- "You will form pairs--one advisor and one learner. The learner will share his/her dilemma/question with the advisor. The advisor will listen, ask questions, and help generate solutions."
- Facilitator gives the group about 5 minutes to pair up and discuss.
- Part 2: Round 2 of advising (5 minutes)
- Instruct the inner circle to rotate two spaces (any number is fine) to find new advisor.
- Repeat the sharing and advising process from Round 1.
- Part 3: Round 3 of advising (5 minutes)
- The Learners and Advisors switch roles: the outer circle becomes the Learners and the inner circle the Advisors. Ask the outside circle to rotate a 3 people to their right.
- The new learner shares their dilemma/question with the new advisor
- Part 4: Round 4 of advising (5 minutes)
- Final round. The outer circle rotates one last time to find a new Advisor. The Learners discuss and share their dilemma.
- Debrief (7 minutes)
- Who heard something new? (show of hands)
- Who had their ideas validated by their advisor? (show of hands)
- What connections do you see between what you discussed and [insert the topic of the session]?
Reduce the number of rounds to two. Instruct the group to form pairs. Each person has one round to act as the Learner and one round to act as the Advisor.