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The thinking tree

We have devised this method for an organisation that wishes to interconnect its values, actions, political and social aims.

I. The tree metaphor

Discover this tool used during a workshop with Fedina

We designed a tree to epitomise the organisation.

- The roots represent the values that help the tree to grow. The aim is to understand what do values mean and what they are used for.

- The tree’s trunk represents the organisation’s political aims. Now that we know what are the organisation’s values, we can then brainstorm on its political aims.

- Thus, the different branches would represent the different themes addressed by the organisation, such as women’s empowerment.

- The leaves are the different training courses offered by the organisation and activities like street theatre, leadership training etc.

II. Workshop n°1 : Reflecting on the values of the organisation

Expected duration : 01:30

Feedback from a facilitator (Fedina- July 2019) : This is a very good, lively and debate-provoking exercise. The basic question that arises is : what is a value ?

III. Workshop n°2 : Reflecting on the political and social aims of the organisation

Expected duration : 01:30

- Each participant explains what s/he considers as political aims ;
- All the political aims are written on post-its, then on the white board ;
- These political aims are fixed on the tree’s trunk.

IV. Workshop n°3 : Identifying the themes of the organisation

Expected duration : 45 minutes

V. Workshop n°4 : Identifying the activities of the organisation

Educational objectives Facilitation methods

1) Keep the same groups.

2) Start with the displayed tree to explain that you are now going to make groups in order to focus on the leaves (activities) : training audiences (audiences, educational techniques)

3) Explain how they will have to fill in the printed tree with different coloured post-its (one colour = 1 message = 1 post-it)

4) Once the groups start the activity, the facilitators go through the groups to help them fill in the table, if needed.

At the end of the activity : participants return all together and each group explains its own tree and the others can adjust or regulate (5’ per group).

During the activity : facilitators complete the different branches of the table.

Participants should write the different activities on the same post-it for each box of the table that was passed out. The ideas should be numbered (one line per idea). In this way, each activity will be linked to an audience and a frequency.
The facilitators should go through the different groups every 10 minutes to remind them to prioritise one activity per theme.