Monthly Archives: February 2006

Thoughts on Self-directed Learning #2

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My great grandfather Alfred Webb Hambrook was a timber faller and riverman on one of the tributaties of the Miramichi River of New Brunswick. His nephews, sons and grandsons and grandnephews in the west followed similar pursuits as fallers or rivermen. Fallers learn early in their career a great principle of productivity.

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Thoughts on Self-Directed Learning #1

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Have you noticed that most how to books in genealogy, and most local genealogy classes and workshops seem to focus on genealogy records and seldom address evidence analysis or research logic? So who is the genealogist going to turn to to learn about these things. Certainly not Ghost Busters! As analytical thinking, the logical combination of evidence and the successful construction of genealogical proof have become as important as the acquition of records, we need to look at some new avenues for learning.

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Sharpening the Saw: “Putting Skills to Work”

I always enjoy attending the large national conferences because I get to see some of the best genealogy educators in action. At the National Genealogical Society Conference 6-10 June 2006, for example, you can observe great educators teaching a wonderful array of topics. When you go, do not get so wrapped up in the subjct that you fail to observehow the presenter does his/her job. Study the graphics of their overheads or powerpoint presentations. Look carefully at the match between handout and presentation.

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How to use the Speaker Evaluation Form.

How can you use the speaker evaluation form to get more testimonials you as a speaker and of your programs? Many speakers use their own speaker / program evaluation form to get feedback on their performance in order to improve their presentations. Thats a good idea. Write your own. Select your own questions. Here’s an idea for a couple of questions:

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Roses for Milady: An Added Value Option


Many the time a bouquet of Red Roses has won over an uncertain lady to new suitor. Ofen as speakers we encounter program planners who want our programs but want a reduced fee. I am learning the hard way that its better not to cut the fee, but to increase the value. Offer something extra.

Many genealogy speakers have skills and experience beyond speaking and teaching. Some have been genealogy society officers, or newsletter / journal editors. Others have business experience of value in other contexts. Perhaps you are one of these. Why not consider teaching others these skills? Why not make this the something extra? Consider these ideas:

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Irresitable Registration

How do you make your genealogy classes, workshop or other event irrestistable to potential participants?

There is apparently more to getting genealogy students to enroll than simply getting a great teacher or speaker. I have been thinking about this as I discuss the challenges with those involved in my speaking tour of British Columbia. So I went looking for some clues in how facilitate the genealogist’s committment to participate in a genealogfy educational event. Here’s what I learned: Continue reading

Nothing so Constant as Change

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This is my grandson wearing his first birthday cake. Cute, isn’t he? Proof that even I am a venerated ancestor. Some of you know that I have been the genealogy and local history librarian at Regina Public Library, in Regina, Saskatchewan, Canada for some 22 years now. This phase of my career is coming to an end. Tuesday 7 February, I informed the Director I would be “retiring”. My last day at the library will be 7 March 2006. In March I will be starting a new venture involving more leisure time with my grandson, and more time to teach genealogy, lecture and consult with students. I will have the opportunity to explore some new ideas in the delivery of genealogy education both in person and on-line. And with the modest revenue raised keep my grandson in new toys and new adventures. Thought you’d like to know.

Tired of Tired Titles? How to Write Lecture Titles that Work

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Somebody, somewhere has probably researched this, but apparently we humans are attracted to those who claim to solve our problems. If the speaker is credible, titles with “how to” in them will catch our attention. So here’s a title waiting for you to

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New On-Line Course for Librarians

My colleague George Morgan has a new on-line course coming on stream on February 6. The course, “Genealogical Record Types” is one of the courses offered in the Genealogical Librarianship Certificate Program at the National Institute for Genealogical Studies. George is a very talented and experienced educator in the field of librarianship. His Aha! Seminars is expanding across the US providing inservice training to librarians. Take a minute to look at the description of his class below:

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Working with Speakers.

Here’s an idea for genealogical society program planners,and librarians hiring speakers. If the speakers fee seems to high, instead of trying to negotiate down the fee, try to increase the value. Read on to see what I mean

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