Motivation Grabbers

Kathy Obear
Amherst, Massachusetts


Use some activity in the introduction section of the seminar that "grabs" the attention of participants and motivates them to participate in the seminar. One key goal is to help participants recognize the difference between their personal level of knowledge and skill and the possible learning that could take place during the seminar.

  1. "How many of you have ..."
    1. ask questions that emphasize problems or issues that will be addressed in the workshop
  2. Skits /role plays that highlight the content of the session or key into feelings
  3. Quizzes / assessments / inventories that assess current skill / knowledge level, needs and/or attitudes of participants regarding the content of the session.
  4. "Why are you here today?"
  5. "What problems / concerns / issues do you have regarding this topic?"
  6. Present current statistics from reputable surveys / research projects.
  7. "What are the characteristics of the worst __________ ?"
  8. "What are the characteristics of the best / ideal __________ ?"
  9. "How are you feeling right now about your current level of skill and knowledge?"
  10. Put into dyads and discuss the problems / concerns they have about the topic.
  11. Wear costumes / props.
  12. Use a short film / video / audio tape / slide show.
  13. Do a "pretest" to establish current skill / knowledge level and give an overview of the content of the seminar.
  14. Do a values clarification / forced choice activity.
  15. Do an icebreaker / teambuilder activity that you process in a way that makes a transition into the session content.
  16. Use a fantasy visualization.
  17. Tell a story or joke that relates to the topic.
  18. Play a bingo / scavenger hunt activity using items that give an overview of the seminar content.


Kathy Obear is a diversity trainer and consultant based in Amherst, Massachusetts (413) 283-2503.


Copyright © 1991 Kathy Obear. Permission is granted to copy and use this material for educational and non-profit purposes only. This copyright statement and acknowledgement of authorship should remain intact on materials you copy from this website.