Recording the Great Teachers Retreat in Al Khor…

Recording this session on March 2, 2012 was a lot of fun. I was recruited at the last minute after one of the organizers saw some iPad visual recording I had done at the Technology in Higher Education Conference on February 27-28th. I arrived at the resort in Al Khor at about 7:30am and began recording one of the small groups at about 9:30am. I started with the “problems” in the top left corner (see photo). This was a lively group and their facilitator did a great job of ensuring everyone spoke and responded to one another before moving on to the next person’s “problem”.

Throughout most of the day, I circulated and took my own notes of various group discussions on the different themes, synthesizing on the poster continuously. By late afternoon, I requested that the small group facilitators take notes on the final discussion before dinner to give me time to catch up on the poster. Time is a challenge with larger groups and large spaces, but I am learning how to deal with these issues each time I do another session.

This was the longest session I have ever done, and it felt like a marathon day. I wonder how other graphic recorders deal with fatigue and information overload during long sessions.

One of the best aspects of this experience was the ‘browsing’ by participants throughout the day. People would stroll by at the breaks and chat with each other about the themes and images coming to life on the poster. One participant commented that she could hear her own voice when she read it. That made my day and her comment stays with me now whenever I am representing people’s ideas in this way.

This year’s Great Teachers Retreat Qatar was sponsored by:

  • Weill-Cornell Medical College in Qatar
  • Qatar University
  • College of the North Atlantic – Qatar
  • University of Calgary – Qatar
  • Northwestern University in Qatar
  • Texas A&M Qatar
  • Virginia Commonwealth University in Qatar
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