Process in Concentric Circles

Concentric Circles works great both for processing and for getting your group to get to know each other. I’ve used it many times to create “teachable moments.” As a processing technique, it’s a good illustration that the facilitators don’t always have to be part of the processing discussion for it to be effective. When I heard this in a Matty Matthison workshop, a lightbulb lit up above my head; I’d never really thought about trusting processing to the group. But it works!

To form two concentric circles, have the group members from pairs. If there is an odd number, ask one of the other facilitators to partner with her. Ask one partner of each pair to form a circle, facing out. Then have the other partners come and stand across from them, forming a circle, facing inward.

Pose a question for pairs to answer to each other. Give them about 30 to 60 seconds for both to share, and have the outer circle move to the right after each question, giving each person a new partner. Three or four questions is about right. Check out this post for ideas for questions to process service learning experiences.

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