Making our INSET pack the best learning experience it can be

Jenny Moore
Every September, the vast majority of designated safeguarding leads (DSLs) will run a safeguarding INSET for their staff. As we approached the fifth iteration of our safeguarding INSET pack, we challenged ourselves even more than usual to make it the very best learning experience it could be - no death by PowerPoint here!

We always aim to embed the principles of great adult learning in our training resources, and the INSET pack is no exception. Designed for DSLs to download and adapt to deliver their September safeguarding INSET, it’s the most popular download on Safeguarding Training Centre. This year, we also included a section on sexism and sexual harassment in schools, a timely but sensitive topic, so we knew we had to get it right.

There’s a lot to cover in this session, and there’s no getting around the fact that for some staff, it might feel like things they’ve heard many times before. So, what did we do to keep it engaging and fresh?

A refresh to our slide template

A positive piece of feedback we often get about our INSET pack is that it’s not just the same slides every year. 

This year, we went further with changing our slides and gave our template a refresh. We wanted to make the slides feel warmer, more dynamic and more inclusive – and we hope our members like the result.

More dynamic slides, with fewer bullet lists

We also made more use of animations (no flying or bouncing text though!) so that text will appear at the same time as the point being made. Introducing the text more gradually like this both makes the slides more dynamic, and follows the principles of good learning for adults.

Bullet lists were culled throughout; wherever possible, we tried to think of new and better ways to present the information. We had a real focus on making sure the slides weren’t essentially speaker notes, and instead reflected the most important information we wanted staff to take away.

We refreshed all the slide titles too  – at every point, we asked ourselves what the nuance was, and how we could make the language warmer and more child-centred.

Interactivity throughout

We know that opportunities to practise learning in a safe environment are key to adult learning. Practising the learning also helps adults see how the content of the session is relevant to them.

We used scenarios to help staff practise spotting the signs of abuse, as we know scenario-based learning is a good way for adults to learn and practise. We also know from speaking to our members that they like using scenarios with staff and value the discussion they can get from them.

As well as short written scenarios in the group activity pack, we created some more immersive scenarios in videos for the new section on tackling sexism and sexual harassment. We wanted to both get staff to practise, and model a good response here.

On top of that, we’ve worked in more small opportunities for interactivity throughout, to keep engagement high.

Summary slides

Summarising key points is a good way to reinforce learning, so a new addition to our pack for this year is ‘key points’ slides at the end of sections. 

Using multimedia

Mixing up how information is delivered is a good way to help learning and engagement, so that’s what we’ve done. 

The immersive scenarios mentioned above are part of this too – sometimes you just need to see it to learn, so we used these to model good practice.

Plus, we know our members like using video and external voices to help reinforce the points they’re making and bring in some external voices.

 

Want to see what the final results look like? 

The 2021/22 safeguarding and child protection INSET pack, launching on 16 June, includes a PowerPoint presentation, detailed notes on how to adapt it and prepare to deliver it, activity pack for staff, and handouts summarising key points to take away. Become a member to access the pack as soon as it launches.

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