Oakie arrives at Oakwood!

Training toys boost learning speed and effectiveness. Here's ours!

At Oakwood we are always looking for new ways to help our students to learn. Our research has shown that the brain works more efficiently when the body is engaged in some form physical activity resulting in an increased level of oxygen, in contrast to long periods of inactivity when sitting listening to someone talking. We want to ensure we give our students the very best environment and tools to learn effectively, therefore we have added the Oakie training toy to the team!

Using training toys is proven to improve the speed and effectiveness of learning. Facilitators can cover more content in less time and make it easy for delegates to digest complex information. The increased activity level helps to keep the audience alert, invigorated and optimistic throughout the day.

Training toys re-channel doodling habits, providing an alternative to common learning environment habits such as pencil sketching and doodling which hinder participant attention in a training session. Hands-on training toys are quiet alternatives to the distracting noise produced by table tapping pens or bubble gum popping. At the start of our sessions, we encourage participants to occupy their hands with silent, pro-active playthings while they focus their eyes and ears on the training topic. Our participants are now designing creative works of art while they remain engaged in the training session. 

Oakwood International's Managing Director, Janine Bunning says:

"I've been on lots of courses myself where trainers have used training toys. They've become particularly popular recently as part of the movement towards what has been called 'accelerated learning' or 'brain-friendly learning'. But I suspect, like many things which become popular in training, some of the people I've seen using them don't really know why they are using them. They are either just copying something they saw on a course somewhere or, at the other extreme, they make exaggerated claims about the impact that training toys have on the learner. We have added the Oakie training toy to our classrooms and would like to explain to students exactly what benefits they can expect. My personal view is that the whole move towards 'brain-friendly' learning is meant to reflect what we know about the brain and about learning. The only problem is that what we think we know is consistently changing but this is all part of what I love about being a learning and development ambassador."

 We have summarised the key elements of our 'brain friendly' learning research below:
  • people need to be in a positive and receptive state to learn effectively - they should be curious, motivated, relaxed, focused rather than anxious, stressed or resistant
  • learning is multi-sensory - we use all our senses to take in information and we recall items more easily if we can attach more senses to them - there are more clues to help us find the memory
  • the brain works better when there is some physical activity and exercise which sends the brain more oxygen - as opposed to long periods of inactivity such as sitting listening to someone talking
  • variety is important in learning because people cannot focus for too long doing just one thing and people have different preferences for the way they approach new learning situations 

To find out more about the Oakwood classroom experience please contact us now for more information about our ILM, CIPD and CIM programmes as well as our portfolio of Corporate Learning Solutions here: http://www.oakwoodinternational.ae. 

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