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Skill's Fair for the E.D.

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Hi Everyone! I need your HELP!! =) I am a new educator and am in charge of developing a skill's fair for the med tech's (nursing assistants). Any creative ideas? I have the content set but I need to come up with how I'll present it. I was thinking games and then started thinking of an Olympic's theme. Any thoughts?

THANK YOU!!!! =)

cjcsoon2bnp, MSN, RN, NP

Specializes in Emergency Nursing.

I think it depends on what skills do you allow your med techs. to do in the ED. I know in the ED I worked in we could place patient's on a monitor (3 Leads, Pulse Ox and B/P), perform EKGs, perform urine dips, obtain and document V/S in the computer, obtain blood glucose readings etc.

:specs: Chris

Dixielee, BSN, RN

Specializes in ER. Has 38 years experience.

As an RN who has been through more skills fairs than I care to remember, I have just one thought. I know you want to make it interesting and fun, but remember, these folks are coming in on their day off, or someone is covering for them while they are on duty, so make it fast and simple. When I attend these types of functions where attendance is mandatory and must be completed on a regular basis, that is how I want it.

Have as few hoops as possible. The best ones are where there are multiple stations, open for many hours that allow one to go through them without having to wait in line, fill out mindless paperwork and take little quizzes. Have one check off sheet that anyone who is demonstrating can sign off. If you must have a little quiz for things like urine testing, accuchecks, etc., have them all together. I hate when I have to put my name, employee number, department and date on top of endless pieces of paper. Keep the paperwork as concise as possible.

I don't know your staff, but I hate it when we have to go to corporate run inservices, presentations, etc. where they feel they must entertain us. I want to get in, get it done and get out. My advice is to not over think it. You are dealing with adults, not school aged kids, so make it as painless as possible.

Good luck and let us know how it goes :)

merlee

Has 36 years experience.

It's a Skills Fair, no apostrophe. Otherwise, no one is very good at it!!!

I agree, keep it as simple as possible - - one sheet, ID info at top, list of stations with a place for each demonstrator to sign, as much hands-on as possible.

If there needs to be testing, have it done at each setting, try to keep it to 5 questions per station.

Call around to other hospitals for info - you should not have to reinvent the wheel.

Best wishes!!

brillohead, ADN, RN

Specializes in Cardio-Pulmonary; Med-Surg; Private Duty. Has 5 years experience.

It's a Skills Fair, no apostrophe. Otherwise, no one is very good at it!!!

AMEN! Definitely have someone proofread all of your printed materials and any signage.

It's really frustrating to be expected to learn from someone who doesn't have a command of the most basic language skills. (I have a nursing instructor like this.... hard to take someone seriously when they can't even pay enough attention to put a period at the end of a sentence... that's a skill taught in KINDERGARTEN for crying out loud!)

You don't want people focused on improper grammar/spelling/punctuation when they should be focused on the skills being discussed. If grammar isn't your thing, just find someone like me who is anal/obsessive about stuff like that to go over your materials for you -- there's one of us in every facility! (I'm currently proofing classmates' papers that are due tomorrow -- everyone in my class knows where to go for editing help!)

It's a Skills Fair, no apostrophe. Otherwise, no one is very good at it!!!

I was going to ask who Skill is, and why he can't organize his own fair ;-)

Apostrophe S is a contraction or a sign of ownership: she's going to the bar (she is going to the bar) or we're meeting at Megan's bar (Megan owns the bar or goes there so often she might as well own the darn thing). Plurals never (never never never) have the apostrophe.

It's really frustrating to be expected to learn from someone who doesn't have a command of the most basic language skills.

Agreed. My nurse educator has major issues with subject-verb agreement. Basic, basic stuff. I get so distracted wondering how someone can go on to get an MSN without being able to construct a sentence properly, I need someone to pat my back while softly whispering "there, their, they're."

Edited by hiddencatRN

brillohead, ADN, RN

Specializes in Cardio-Pulmonary; Med-Surg; Private Duty. Has 5 years experience.

I get so distracted wondering how someone can go on to get an MSN without being able to construct a sentence properly, I need someone to pat my back while softly whispering "there, their, they're."

OMG, I think we were separated at birth!

NurseOnAMotorcycle, ASN, RN

Specializes in Med-Surg, Emergency, CEN. Has 10 years experience.

I agree with keeping it simple and concise. I like trying things at each station with an instructor, but I feel more worried about trying something new if it's preceded by "You'll be tested on this." because I start wondering what will happen if I don't do well enough.

Esme12, ASN, BSN, RN

Specializes in Critical Care, ED, Cath lab, CTPAC,Trauma. Has 40 years experience.

Hi Everyone! I need your HELP!! =) I am a new educator and am in charge of developing a skill's fair for the med tech (nursing assistants). Any creative ideas? I have the content set but I need to come up with how I'll present it. I was thinking games and then started thinking of an Olympic theme. Any thoughts?

THANK YOU!!!! =)

I know you are a new educator and want to do the best....but a performance or games are really irritating to ED staff.:madface: I agree with Dixie....short and simple.

Remember to KISS :kissthe staff with information (Keep It Simple Silly). Set up stations with the information key points on display/presentation board with pre-printed question and answer sheet with all the information but the participants name....set up at various stations through out the room. Keep the room open all hours for all staff to complete task.

Remember the personality of an ED nurse......they want the facts and leave out the extraneous information that isn't pertinent to what they need to do.....and be quick about it..... they have things they need to do.

Appeal to this and they will be happy AND compliant.:smokin:

Altra, BSN, RN

Specializes in Emergency & Trauma/Adult ICU.

Agree with the above posts. Want people to take skill proficiency seriously? Then leave out silly themes. Focus on the task at hand. Some useful token of appreciation is nice if there is a budget for it - something like badge holders or a pack of pens or a coupon for the hospital cafeteria.

SMARN

Specializes in ER, ICU. Has 5 years experience.

Plurals never (never never never) have the apostrophe.

Surely someone with such grammar anxiety knows that's not true.

I will concede that there are very few instances where it can be used correctly, however it's not "never (never never never)".

Pixie.RN, MSN, RN, EMT-P

Specializes in EMS, ED, Trauma, CNE, CEN, CPEN, TCRN. Has 12 years experience.

Okay, grammar police ... this is a staff request to stay on topic, please. Thanks. ;)

Back to the subject: agree with the others that themes, etc., are distracting and annoying. Pretend your learners are all kids with ADD. :) Give them what the Army calls "BLUF" -- bottom line up front.

Our critical care skills fair is set up with one big open room and lots of stations. Some are interactive, have hands on with equipment, quick question/answer or lastly posterboard topics. You carry around one checklist of stations and have it signed by whomever is running that station. The big plus at our fairs, they have a bowl of candy at each station. Definately makes it enjoyable.

Christy1019, ASN, RN

Specializes in Emergency/Trauma/Critical Care Nursing. Has 11 years experience.

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okay, grammar police ... this is a staff request to stay on topic, please. thanks. ;)

back to the subject: agree with the others that themes, etc., are distracting and annoying. pretend your learners are all kids with add. :) give them what the army calls "bluf" -- bottom line up front.

:yeah: thank you lunah, i thought i would have to be first to say something. i can honestly say that sometimes i turn into the spelling police, probably because spelling comes very naturally to me, and have been known to go through registration in our er to edit the original chief complaint when spelled so goofy that it doesn't need to be a permanent part of any patient's records.

i also find that i get annoyed when it comes to their, they're, there etc, yet i am guilty of throwing commas wherever it sounds like it needs one, regardless if the rest of the world cares.

apr 25 by brillohead a member since aug '08 - from 'sw michigan'. posts: 599 likes: 742

age: 43

awards:

quote from merlee

it's a skills fair, no apostrophe. otherwise, no one is very good at it!!!

amen! definitely have someone proofread all of your printed materials and any signage.

it's really frustrating to be expected to learn from someone who doesn't have a command of the most basic language skills. (i have a nursing instructor like this.... hard to take someone seriously when they can't even pay enough attention to put a period at the end of a sentence... that's a skill taught in kindergarten for crying out loud!) quote

[color=#663366] [color=#663366]for the love of god, it's an apostrophe!, whether or not she meant to put it there, or posted via cellphone which mine is known to add apostrophes to most conjunctions.. hardly gives you all guys any right to pick on her about it and make such a big deal of it.

after reading the op question, i'm kind of annoyed that after the grammar debate , the suggested responses were basically telling her "make it short and sweet, no one wants to be there anyways".

i'm assuming that your skills fair must be similar to our facilities annual competences we must complete as well as the techs. i'll admit that the long videos that are usually unchanged from year to year will get tedious and will lose their interest. besides the re-certification for using glucometers, tb mask fitting, and hazmat suit application etc, the part's that i found most interesting included learning on each other how to measure the bladder w/a normal ultrasound (too cheap to give the er bladder scanners), which we now use this method for post void residuals if possible to avoid risk of uti.

my other fave was the simulation room with a sim patient, and our group was then the code team. you can actually start iv/see blood return the sim pt's arms, he moans and breathes etc. then we ended the night with a stoke/pain/shock/lvad etc jeopardy game, winners were given some decent hospital apparell/bags/umbrellas. i guess their methods to keep us current is working b/c every year jacaho praises us immensely for our level 1 trauma center, stroke/mi care pathway, as well as our management of sepsis. we kinda made it into a competition to see which team could save the patient with the most complicated symptoms.

p.s. lunah... i just so happen to be one of those adhd learners and i'll forget the bottom line 2min. after you say it, unless i can relate it to something else, i.e. simulator competition, jeopardy, hands on stuff etc..

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brillohead, ADN, RN

Specializes in Cardio-Pulmonary; Med-Surg; Private Duty. Has 5 years experience.

[color=#663366]for the love of god, it's an apostrophe!, whether or not she meant to put it there, or posted via cellphone which mine is known to add apostrophes to most conjunctions.. hardly gives you all guys any right to pick on her about it and make such a big deal of it.

the op stated "

i need your help!!"

and "

i need to come up with how i'll present it."

well, for a whole lot of people, seeing an apostrophe for every. single. plural. word. would be a huge distraction. that means that it is a "big deal" in regards to her intention of offering the best skills fair experience possible to the employees at her facility.

not everyone has grammar/spelling skills, just like not everyone has athletic ability or math skills or whatever. fact of life.

my bosses at work have all of their correspondence checked by one of the underlings, because they don't have spelling skills. my husband works for another firm and if he has an important letter to write, he emails it to me for me to proof/edit it for him, because those things are "invisible" to him but jump off a page like a flashing beacon to me.

on the other hand, i let him take care of vehicle maintenance because even though he can't see pee splatters on a toilet seat, he can see the tiniest smudge of grease/oil inside the engine compartment of a vehicle. (he literally washes the engine off!!!!)

i offered constructive criticism to the op -- have your printed materials proofed by someone skilled in that craft in order to have the full message delivered to your audience. i'll offer you some constructive criticism too -- use a font size that doesn't require a magnifying glass, and more people might read your message. :D

nurse2033, MSN, RN

Specializes in ER, ICU.

"Themed" training is lame, it's just polishing a turd. If you want my attention create an immersive, challenging simulation that really teaches me something. Otherwise let's just get it over with so I can get back to my life. I believe that the educative value of a four hour battery of training is very low. Most of the time it is just verification of things we already do. I would encourage you to replace the skills fair with year-round training that focuses on one thing at a time. I know, this is more work for you, but your job is create effective training, not punch a bunch of checklists. Just my opinion...