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Watching and Listening



Welcome It is important, in welcoming participants, to consider that participants generally have mixed feelings of nervousness, anxiety, fear, excitement, and anticipation which are usually associated with the unfamiliarity of the surroundings and the people they find themselves with. It is the trainors' task to immediately create a climate of physical and psychological comfort, and to establish that the group is here to learn together.

Defreezing Exercise:
Symbolic Object
In this exercise called The Symbolic Object, participants are paired off and asked to pick out any object in the material world that, in their opinion, best symbolizes their partner. Depending on whether the partners are known to each other or are meeting for the first time, the symbolic object may be one born out of long-time knowledge or first-time impressions. The partners are given ten minutes to talk and get to know each other, after which they introduce their partner to the class using the symbol they have chosen. They also give the reason for their choice of symbol. Participants are not allowed to consult with their partner regarding their answer.

Expectations Workshop This portion is very critical to the rest of the training program and must not be rushed. Here the participants are grouped (no more than five participants per group) and asked to list down their expectations of the program they are about to participate in. The following questions are asked:

  • What do you expect from the program: subject matter, activities, methods of instruction, schedule?
  • What do you expect from your facilitators / trainors?
  • What do you expect from your co-participants?
  • What do you expect from the program staff?
  • They then discuss their answers with each other and write them on flipchart paper for reporting. The group assigns a reporter to present its discussion answers to the rest of the class. All groups present their lists and answer any clarificatory questions.

    Aligning Expectations with Workshop ObjectivesThe objective of this portion is to align the expectations listed by the participants with the objectives set for the program. The idea here is to check which expectations are indeed covered in the program and which are not. It is important that participants, right from the start of the program, proceed with an understanding of which expectations can be met and which cannot. Expectations of the trainors, program staff, and co-participants are likewise processed. The expectations listed are a good indication of participants' motivations and understanding of what the training is all about.

    ILO Training Guide, pp. 1-11
    Handout: Workshop Objectives

    Preview of Module 1 A preview of the module provides a good peek into what is to come. It affords participants a sense of what is required of them and what it will take in terms of their time and energy. Participants learn better if they know where they are going, why, and how they will get there. It builds value for achieving program objectives and, if properly done, excites the participants about getting there.
    ILO Training Guide, pp. 1-11
    Handout: Module 1: Watching and Listening

    Learning Roadmap The Learning Roadmap is distributed at this point. Just as a roadmap instructs a person to get to where he wishes to go, the Learning Roadmap shows the path (learning activities, methods) that will be taken to achieve the objectives. It is by no means permanent and inflexible; it has room for alternative learning routes should the planned routes seem ineffective or inappropriate at any given time.

    Handout: Module 1: Learning Roadmap

    House Rules and
    Other Arrangements This is the time to discuss arrangements for lodging, snack/meal breaks and other administrative and logistical matters. This portion is for clarifying arrangements only and not for bringing up complaints of a personal nature or issues that question policies such as those involving expenditures and cash advances. It is very important that the discussion be kept focused and reasonable; it must not entertain irrelevant questions or comments.

    Snapshots of Childhood:
    A Structured Learning
    Experience The conduct and processing of this session requires the skill of a professional experienced in doing such processes. It would be dangerous to have it run by one without such background.

    Participants are asked to recall their childhood and draw two scenes. One drawing is labeled I like this and the other I don't like this. The first depicts a favorite and positive childhood experience, while the other a disliked experience that is usually better forgotten. Participants then take turns describing their drawings and explaining their meanings. This is not an easy task for participants to do, and it is often painful. Tears may even fall, but participants must be assured that these have their use. This exercise aims to connect" the labor inspector with what childhood is all about, the point being that child laborers do not have any childhood at all. By recalling their own childhood memories, participants get to realize that the scenes of their childhood such as play, graduations, birthdays, vacations, family reunions and presents are not in a child laborer's world. Participants get to realize that they do not want this deprivation to happen to their own children or family, and hopefully extend this feeling to include child laborers as well.

    The Psychosocial
    Development of the
    Child This is a lecturette-discussion ideally handled by a guest psychologist. In this session, he tackles such topics as a child's stages of development, personality, and reasoning. If participants get to understand a child's process of growth, they will better appreciate why child labor must be eradicated, interfering as it does with that period of life when future adults are actually formed.

    ILO: The Working Child: Psychosociological Approach
    Handouts: Development of the Child
    Piaget's Stages of Cognitive Development
    Stages in the Organization of the Child's Personality
    Erikson's Stages of Psychosocial Development
    Phases of Adolescence
    General Characteristics of Adolescence
    Basic Needs that Govern a Child's Growth

    The Child Laborer:
    Hazards and Risks This session, best handled by a medical doctor, tackles the hazards and risks which children face at work. It discusses the stages of physical development and the effect of certain conditions of work on the child's body, like his neurological, muscular, nervous, and skeletal systems. Highly stressed in this session is the fact that immediate and observable effects of certain hazards are not any more important than those whose effects show up only years later in life.

    ILO Training Guide, pp. 92-4
    Handouts: The set included in this adaptation will have to be revised and rewritten in layman's language for better understanding.

    IPEC Film-Showing From this documentary participants get to appreciate the child labor problem and its overwhelming ills, and what is being done both internationally and locally. It also shows that there is still a lot that can be done within one's small pockets of influence. The experience must be processed to bring out key learnings.

    Reinforcement In this portion, whatever learnings are gained during the course of the day are reiterated and highlighted as the take-home values participants leave the classroom with. Participants are reinforced for behaviors exhibited so that they are also made aware of the progress they are making in their learning. The day ends on a positive note.

    Synthesis of the Day's
    Learnings It is important that an integration of the day's learnings is done at the close of each day. The many insights, discoveries and realizations must be put together into a coherent whole so that participants get a sense of completeness and better appreciate how the scattered pieces fall into place. This, together with a word about the next day's activities, puts closure to a day, module, or training program.

    See the activities for the next day.


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