Discussions - How to Lead One

I can't take it anymore!  I am at my wits end! teacher talkingFor the past two weeks, in one of my classes, we have been assigned a book to read.  The assignment also includes being prepared for discussion, along with answering the following questions: what was the main take away for you; and how does this book contribute to the emergence worship conversation?

The problem is no one knows how to have a conversation!  The "discussions" have turned into mini-book reports with comments from people who have obviously not read to material.

Mike Stavlund, my professor for a class on Emergence, gave our class the following suggestions and tips for leading a discussion.  Please read them, and if you plan to be part of an educated discussion consider using what Mike offered to us.

  1. Ask good questions - open-ended questions invite further discussion, think about answering the question you are asking - a discussion is not a survey of the book!
  2. Know your audience - understand what people react to and how they react - know your group's language and baggage
  3. Prepare to succeed - use everything at your disposal; be part of the GROUP
  4. Be aware of people who knowingly or unknowingly attempt to derail the conversation - adapt to changes and interruptions
  5. Silence is not a bad thing
  6. Be prepared to RESPOND to questions and criticism in order to keep the discussion on track

So there you go.  Now you have no excuse for not knowing the difference between a book discussion and a book report.