Training Room Setup
On-Site Training is a hands-on experience. Please follow the guidelines below to setup your training room for a successful staff training experience.
You will need to provide a teaching computer that runs Windows, Chrome, Firefox, IE/Edge, is internet connected, hooked to a projector, has an external keyboard and an external mouse, and is in the front of the room near the screen. The projection must be large enough for all participants to see. Its very frustrating to the user to not be able to see the details when they are trying to learn. The instructor may also bring their personal laptop. They will need a space next to the teaching computer to put their laptop, a power source for the laptop, and connection to wireless internet. All items related to the trainer must be stationed at the front of the room and in a position where they can see the faces of the people attending class. (SPoCs should plan to position themselves throughout the room and some in the very back so they can see everyone's screen).
The Night Before
With almost every training we have, the church is surprised by the number of people who want to attend but don't let the Church Project Manager know ahead of time. Even though the Church PM asks multiple times and in some cases even assigns who comes to what session, each time more people show up than expected. Since we have this experience, we propose you prepare 30% more stations training stations than you expect attendees. For example, if you are expecting 20 people to attend, set out 26 computers (or if they are bringing their own, set out 26 chairs). Or, if it's a bigger crowd and you're expecting 100 people, set up for 130 seats with computers. This will dramatically cut down on the scrambling right before class when surprise guests appear and keep the calm atmosphere we've worked so hard to create intact. :-)
Set up of all equipment (teaching computer, hooked to projector, projection screen, learning computers/powerstrips, tables, chairs, wireless, hard-wired LAN, etc.) should be complete the night before training begins. Please do not leave any set up activities for the morning of the first day of training. If possible, it is advantageous for all training sessions for the week to be held in the same room with the same setup (as opposed to tearing down between each session or each day and having to reset because the room was used by others between training sessions). Also important to note is that there should be a seat for each attendee at a table and that all seats at tables should have an unobstructed view of the projection screen (simple, but it’s been overlooked before :-)
All attendees should have a computer of their own in order to facilitate the hands-on learning style we employ in all classes. If attendees are bringing their own computers/laptops, they should arrive no less than 30 minutes before class start. If this is the method chosen, knowledgeable staff members must be on hand to help the attendees quickly verify the steps below, as Think Ministry personnel will not be able to troubleshoot network connectivity and workstation login issues. If you elect to rent/borrow computers for training, please know your staff, and whether or not they will be familiar and comfortable working with a laptop or chromebook. Some have only worked on PCs and find trackpads and smaller keyboards difficult to use. They will have enough new things to learn during On-Site Training :-). Please do not make becoming familiar with a laptop an additional issue. If you rent/borrow computers, you may need to also rent/borrow an external keyboard and external mouse for each computer. Student’s machine should be able to run Windows, Chrome, Firefox, IE/Edge, have internet connectivity, and have an external keyboard and an external mouse.
As of class start time, *all* computers (including teaching computer – the trainer will use your equipment as they will need theirs accessible for other purposes during training) should have been tested and passed the following:
- Plugged in, turned on, and network connectivity established (you may laugh, but it's happened where there were not enough power plugs, or settings weren't right for connectivity in the training area :-)
- Your IT department’s preferred standard browser opened, unnecessary messages cleared (do you want to import anything, do you want this to be your default browser, do you want to save passwords for this site, etc.), the MinistryPlatform URL entered, working, and bookmarked. Please note that Internet Explorer (with the printing ActiveX control installed!) is preferred by people who run a lot of reports, and Firefox is required for training with Check-in.
Other Setup Notes
- Please be sure the computer that was configured during SPoC & System Readiness Training to be used as a Check-In system, including having a label printer connected and set up, is in the room and ready to be used during the Check-In class.
- Cardstock paper and thick markers will make really big tabletop name tags/tents and to be put on the table in front of each person's computer so they can actually be called by name during class.
- Classroom wireless or wired LAN must be capable of handling the load for the number of computers expected, along with the myriad of personal devices the staff will probably have with them. If it is not currently, please enhance it for the three days of class.
- For the Contributions class only, the computer with the check scanner, drivers, and software already installed, is the one that will be the instructor’s station. This MUST be the same system configured during SPoC & SystemReadiness Training.
- Note: The minimum and maximum capacities for each class are just suggestions and can be flexible.
Our goal is to maximize the opportunity to begin the training with peace and calm and everyone excited but relaxed. Minimizing the impact of lots of little things going on like most of what is listed above will help us meet our goal. Something may still happen, but if we plan to handle the big things, the little ones will go almost unnoticed.