OpenStack Upstream Institute Trainers’ Guide

If you’re joining the training activities as a trainer, coach, or if you hold training sessions locally you can refer to this document to find some tips and best practices to consider before hosting the class.

We have collected the suggestions based on our experiences from previous Upstream Institute trainings.

General tips for Trainers and Coaches

  • If you are not presenting, remain engaged with the class

    • Choose a table and sit with the students to help

    • If there aren’t enough mentors or every table has one already, float around the room checking in on people, especially during exercises

  • When possible, sit at a table and build connections with attendees

  • Talk slowly when you are presenting - English may not be their first language

  • Pause to ask students if they have questions on the material throughout your presentation

  • Ask the students questions to make sure they are engaged and understand the material

  • Join the IRC channel of the class and participate during the training

Tips for the Class

  • A week before the training begins, ensure attendees are aware of the prerequisites when confirming attendance

  • Repeat sending out a reminder to the attendees including the prerequisites and details about the timing and venue the day before the training

    • Those who haven’t seen the previous notification get a chance to prepare

    • Those who forgot can still prepare

  • Get started on time even if there aren’t many people in the room, just go slowly to give people more time to show up, while still holding the interest of the students that are there

  • Use round tables if available as opposed to traditional classroom style setup

    • Organize the tables according to project interest - especially on day 2

  • Don’t give out VM image at the beginning of the first day

    • Students will play with the image instead of paying attention to the class

  • Give out swag and use competition to help keep interest and attention

  • Promote ideas for next steps after training is done; for example

    • Prior to the Summits promote Project Onboarding and other related conference sessions

  • Use every opportunity to receive feedback, for example:

    • Could be done before end of class, for instance during the deep dive blocks

    • Could be emailed survey after the class - harder to get participation

    • Could be a short question as an IRC vote or something like as an exercise between two blocks

Tips for Exercises

  • Incentivize participation

  • Encourage use of IRC for answering questions or the training etherpad if an exercise requires more space or IRC is not available

  • Discuss the problems and solutions and have them explain how they got there or why they answered what they did

  • Be prepared with the deep dives that attendees have very different level of knowledge and experience