I'm always amused when I only have two hours to cover such a broad topic with an audience I don't know, but like I learned with writing, knowing the audience was key. Who in their right mind would want to be in a two hour training on a Friday afternoon before being released to the weekend.
I felt the drain the second the leaders entered the room. The last thing they wanted was a workshop, especially since they spent the entire week working in schools where youth face some of the most difficult obstacles in the nation.
They arrived already spent.
Still, I came prepared and gave everyone a finger puppet. My request was that they remain playful for two more hours. I definitely overplanned and got to 1/20th of what I prepared, but they seemed to crack up and smile along the way. I armed them with examples and tools they can use when conferencing one on one with kids.
I left feeling a little panicked that they needed more direct instruction of do this, and do this, and never do that, and do this...but that's not my style. I made it National Writing Project style.
I guessed when a woman came up afterwards and asked, "Do you also do workshops on how to do effective workshops? I want to learn how to engage people like you did," that the exercise was successful.
In contrast, sitting in traffic from New Haven to Stratford was not a success. That corridor of I-95 is horrendous.