David Anderson never generates a challenge without giving us some resources to work with. This week he linked to an interesting article at HBR.org called 7 Ways to Capture Someone’s Attention. I read the article and went to bed thinking about how I might conjure up an incomplete story of some kind.
When I reread the article, the word ‘task’ jumped off the page! Incomplete tasks drive me nuts. I already had an incomplete task leftover from a prototype I made a few months ago. Well, that got me off to a good start!
Click here to see the sample.
The subject here is “The Numbers Game”, an exercise in Lean training to make people realize that if they tidy up their workspace, they will become more efficient and waste less. This sample is just one part of a much larger module.
The instructions for the task include a short video: watching the little hand drag the numbers is captivating! So the “Ready” needed to be animated to get the attention of the learner.
Here’s a synopsis of the seven ways to capture attention, with an eLearning spin:
Mystery: Incomplete stories or tasks. My hook was a task no one could complete in the allotted time.
Automaticity: A gun shot, the colour red, dramatic or loud music, or something memorably warm or interesting. My timer is an example of automaticity. You’re going to notice something that is red, bold and in the top-left of the screen. You’re also going to notice that the countdown has started!
Reward: Make the learning satisfying, reward the learner with praise or acknowledgement. Have them anticipate the reward… make them salivate.
Acknowledgement: We all have a strong need for acknowledgement. We want to know we have value. How do we create that feeling in elearning? This is a challenge indeed. We can start by collecting and using the learner’s name. Here again, I can’t overuse this device or it loses its impact.
You can download the Storyline file here.