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In-service days give nurses the chance to join with their colleagues and build their skills. Instead of planning a boring in-service full of lectures and lessons, you should spice up your training experience by incorporating fun options. By making in-service a bit more entertaining for your nurses, you can increase their enjoyment of the day and likely improve their levels of attentiveness.
As they complete their job duties, nurses commonly come across an assortment of exciting, scary or even hilarious experiences. Give your nurses a chance to bond by incorporating some share time into your in-service. Ask each nurse to write down a memorable on-the-job experience on an index card. Place these cards in a basket or bag and draw them out one at a time, reading the entries to the gathered group.
Instead of just telling your nurses what they should do, allow them to actually act this desirable behavior out through role-play. If discussing patient communication techniques during your in-service, allow your nurses to act out the techniques taught, performing skits in which they demonstrate the proper use of each. Not only is acting out these techniques more entertaining than simply reading about them, it also will likely improve nurses’ memories of the taught techniques, as they will have actually tried them.
Test your in-service participants’ knowledge with a quiz-show-style challenge. As your in-service draws to a close, select some eager candidates to participate in a quiz show, or have all members participate by forming teams. Prepare a slideshow version of a well-known quiz show such as “Jeopardy” or “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire.” Allow the participants to answer the posed questions, keeping score and ultimately declaring a winner at the game’s end.
Get your in-service participants out of their seats with a treasure hunt. Prior to your in-service, prepare a map featuring different hospital locations. At each marked location, place a medical clue or question that participants must answer. Divide your participants into teams and allow them to move through the treasure hunt, letting them all tackle the challenge at the same time, or giving each team a chance to try while timing their efforts and ultimately declaring the team that completed the challenge in the shortest period the winners.
Erin Schreiner is a freelance writer and teacher who holds a bachelor's degree from Bowling Green State University. She has been actively freelancing since 2008. Schreiner previously worked for a London-based freelance firm. Her work appears on eHow, Trails.com and RedEnvelope. She currently teaches writing to middle school students in Ohio and works on her writing craft regularly.