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What we can learn

about e-learning from a

Christmas dinner

If you're anything like me, the joys of presentopening and being with loved ones have

slipped into a distant second behind the true

meaning of Christmas: eating! The traditional

Christmas dinner is a treat I look forward to all

year, and as my mum and I were looking

through age-old recipe books a few days ago

I started thinking, might the traditional

Christmas dinner have anything to teach us

about e-learning? (Obviously, I did not think

this, but play with me for a bit. And apologies

in advance if this makes anyone hungry.)

One of the most frustrating things about

Christmas is that you will inevitably have a

fridge full of food throughout most of

December which you're not allowed to eat

because it's 'for Christmas'. This is because

Christmas dinner, like good e-learning,

requires a lot of preparation.

Whether it's analysing training needs, curating

and slimming down content, or prototyping

technical solutions, the preparation is the 'big

Christmas shop' you have to endure before

you can get creating.

When it comes to cooking the dinner, too

many cooks can very definitely spoil the

gravy. My mum and I spend at least as much

time chasing other people away from the

kitchen as we do actually cooking. This is true

of an e-learning project team too. You need

people who understand the content, the

requirement and the vision for the project, so

having a dedicated project team is of the

upmost importance.

One of the biggest similarities between

Christmas dinner and the creation of elearning is the importance of striking the right

balance. You need to include a good range of

components: activities, quizzes, reflection,

learning aids and resources, stuffing, potatoes

both roasted and mashed…sorry, where was

I? And don't just throw components in for the

sake of it.

Rosie Scott

Senior Learning Designer

Learning Pool

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