Workshop Recipe

This workshop has been designed to be flexible, repeatable and accessible to all rebels and groups of rebels. Here we have laid out everything you will need to know to feel confident in bringing this to your group and holding the discussion. You do not need to read everything right now, and some of it you will already know!

  1. The Dish - Aims of the Session: This discussion will bring Rebels from not knowing which direction to focus their energy at to understanding XR’s trajectory and identifying their place in it.

  2. Ingredients & Tools - The Practicalities of Holding a Workshop: Building your delivery team, guides to the technology & our accessibility resources.

  3. The Kitchen - Holding the Space: Strategy can be a volatile subject with many opinions, here we have resources to help you hold a valuable discussion and ensure the safety of everyone involved.

  4. Your Twist - Personalising the Workshop: Since this workshop is designed to be replicated in a variety of ways here are some suggestions on how you can shape the session to fit your group.

  5. Steps / Method:

  • Gathering the Crew: Templates to help with event creation and social media along with a promotion checklist & ideas for reaching the rebels who may not be the usual faces.
  • Measuring the Ingredients: Steps to take to be fully prepared to give this workshop, including holding a practice run to ensure your team can deliver!
  • Throw it in the Pan: Link to the Script & Slides for the session, including facilitator’s prompts and directions.
  • Dinner is Served: Suggested next steps after the workshop, including sending out follow up emails with all the key signposts!

The Dish - Aim of the Session

Just imagine that we have some artsy photos here of chocolate melting over strawberries, a bubbling pot of hearty chilli, or a sweaty rebel glued to the road!

So what juicy meal are we trying to make here?

  • We hope that this discussion will bring Rebels from not knowing which direction to focus their energy at to understanding XR’s trajectory and identifying their place in it.
  • We hope that participants can make connections with each other around the things they want to do going forward.
  • We hope this session will also clarify what the key aims of the 2021 strategy are and who came together in the assembly to build it.

The session itself could be done in 2 ½ hours but will likely last 3 hours if you allow for questions and interactions. It has 2 breaks scheduled in and is in manageable chunks.

Ingredients & Tools - The Practicalities of Holding a Session

Some of us have held many an XR workshop and some of us are newer to it. Here we have a complete resource of everything we think you will need to pull this off no matter what your level of experience!

Holding a Workshop Recipe (with added chocolate!)

Let’s start at the top - you need a team!

These are the ingredients:

  • Host x1: They hold the Zoom account, open the session & admit people from waiting room
  • Facilitators x2:
  1. These are your friendly faces, they deliver the content and guide participants through the discussion
  2. If you want facilitation training please attend one on a Thursday at 6:30pm.
  • Breakout room Tech x1: They organise rebels into the Breakout Rooms and open them when necessary. Click here to learn how to manage Breakout Rooms and allocate participants.
  • Chat monitor x1 (can add more to taste): Keep an eye on the chat for any questions, tech issues and reply if possible/highlight to Facilitators q’s they can’t answer
  • Note Taker x1: An ordered typer to note down key things, and ensure BO feedback is recorded in harvest doc.

As with most recipes we have various tools in the kitchen we need to know how to use! (Don’t ask us how a slow cooker works though!)



  1. How to upload video to YouTube
  2. How to add subtitles to your YouTube video

Harvest Document

We use harvest docs extensively in our Workshops, however this time we will be setting up a little differently as we have so many break out rooms.

  • We suggest the facilitators create a Harvest Doc with the scope questions of their choosing - Make copy of this template.
  • Then we suggest they:
  1. Take a blank document
  2. Name it
  3. Share with the participants in the session
  4. Then before each Breakout session add the question at the bottom
  5. Allow space for each BO room to take notes by numbering the BO room to identify where they need to type notes.

This way it is clear for the groups where to type and they don’t get distracted by the next discussion question that will be coming up. (Prompts for this will be in the script)

Although many kitchen tools are designed for the average distribution of humans, some of us need to alter these tools to make use of them.

When creating your Zoom event, be sure to include a contact for you so that rebels with specific needs can reach out prior to the workshop to let you know.


  • We have a great team of BSL interpreters in XR, if a rebel requests this addition then you can email them on They will need to know the length of the session, the time and date, a copy of the script beforehand, and be invited to the trial run to ensure the full team is able to work together.
  • For practicality we use Zoom’s feature, where the rebel needing the interpreter pins the translator’s video so that they are always in view, the interpreters work in pairs to switch out on a regular basis and the session techie needs to ensure the interpreter is in the same Break out Room as the rebel in need.

Real-Time Transcription:

  • Zoom has a great feature of real time transcription where it converts the words said in the session into text for a rebel to read. This needs to be activated in your Zoom account setting before the session. Here is how to do that: Transcription Instructions. Note that this option, although great, doesn’t work too well with stronger accents! To save the Transcript after the workshop - here’s how to do that here.

Although we want this recipe to be clear for any rebel, we are only human so if you need any expert chefs here are their contacts!


The Kitchen - Holding the Space

You wouldn’t cook in a dirty kitchen and likewise you don’t want to enter into a deep discussion without considering the comfort and safety of those involved.

Inform your Rebels

Wipe down the surfaces and start with a clear space. For everyone’s comfort it is good to outline the workshop ahead of time so that people know what to expect and can prepare themselves. So make sure this is clearly stated in your promotion and any emails your Rebels may receive before the event.

This workshop roughly looks like:

  • 30 mins of content followed by Break out Session (Each BO Session is 20mins)
  • 10 min Break
  • Two further BO Sessions
  • 10 min break
  • Final 2 BO Sessions then Round off

You may also wish to share the Scope Questions you have chosen for each Break out Session ahead of time, this would allow rebels to think in the days before the Workshop about the content and have these questions in mind as they read the Strategy.

Include all your Rebels

No one wants to be barred from the kitchen when it smells this good! Look over the XR Principles of Inclusivity and be sure to include a contact email in your promotion materials so that rebels can reach out to you if they have any additional needs. This is a big part of the Strategy itself and we must walk the walk!

Prepare for a Smooth Workshop

Sometimes things interrupt our flow, whether it’s unexpected tech issues, disruptive behaviours or our emotions. We welcome all people but not all behaviours, our emotions are important and valid and sometimes we need space to feel them, and technology - well we can’t help acts of kitchen mayhem!

Here are some resources that it would be good to familiarise yourself with in case one of these situations arises.

  1. If something stressful does happen here are some Suggestions on Grounding Exercises
  2. If someone is being disruptive or needs some emotional space here is a De-escalation Process.

Break Out Rooms

Rebels who are newer to our use of breakout rooms may have some anxiety about being thrown into a small space with strangers. It can be daunting! So in the spirit of informing Rebels beforehand to allow them time to prepare we have written up a guide:

  1. How to run a Breakout Room, which goes through the roles of “facilitator” and “notetaker” as well as why we cap the size of the Rooms for the length of time we have.
  2. How to Actively Listen, It’s important when having discussions that we listen to each other and not be thinking ahead to what we are going to say next. Sometimes it doesn’t feel natural, but some Rebels may want to add a spice to the mix that you hadn’t considered!

Your Twist - Personalising the Workshop

A recipe wouldn’t be too useful if you could only make it on the 2nd Wednesday of the month under a full moon in rural Spain now would it?

This workshop is designed to be replicated in a variety of spaces and we fully understand that holding this in a Local space may be very different to holding it in a National space, and that holding it with a focussed Working Group will differ greatly from holding it in a cross-circle space.

There are 4 Break Out Sessions in this Workshop, so we will be having 4 different, but related conversations. But a prompt that would inspire creativity in the South West Actions Circle may confuse and feel unnatural in the XR Cambridge General Meeting. So what we have done is offer suggestions for each Break out session and hope that within them you either find one that sparks your passion or you find the inspiration to shape your own. You know the most about your group!

Break Out Session 1 - Radical Inclusion

Framing: We are looking in this section for people’s initial responses to the strategy, starting to pinpoint the things they find interesting and diving into the radical inclusion. Voicing how they and their group may platform more diverse voices and accommodate for access needs in everything we do.

  • “Responding to what you have heard, what stands out/feels important or relevant to you personally?”
  • “How might your group implement these strategies, what could you change?”
  • What caught your eye in the strategy, what do you think is inspiring that you may be able to use to galvanise support this year?
  • “How could your crew improve inclusion and accessibility in your spaces?”
  • “What support or training might you need for your group to be as powerful as possible?”
  • “How might your crew work within the movement of movements in the face of climate breakdown, and government oppression?”
  • How might your team support LGs in applying the strategy?
  • Think of your Group / Community, you know these people, how might you inspire and energize them around this strategy?

Break Out Session 2 - Taking Action

Framing: Now we want rebels to get stuck into their action ideas. Thinking about nonviolence, support roles, arrestee support, targets, tactics and how to make them as inclusive as possible.

  • “What is needed in your local group to build on where you are right now?”
  • “What would you or your Local Group like to focus on in Nonviolent Direct Action? How can you escalate your ideas?”
  • “How might your group coordinate with these UK-wide and national actions?”
  • “How might you work with neighbouring Local Groups, and how might you collaborate with other movements?”
  • “How might you use these shared moments to inspire your own actions calendar?”
  • “How might you target your local pillars of power: education, banking, fossil fuel companies, media”
  • “How might you maximise all Truth Telling opportunities throughout the year? What support do you need?”

Break Out Session 3 - Mobilising your Community

Framing: Here we hope rebels will think about the communities around them, the mobilisation techniques and how we might bring the truth to as many people as possible and inspire them to act. Emphasis should again be on what they as individuals can do or how they can help their groups mobilise.

  • “How might our group mobilise in our communities?”
  • “Which of these mobilisation methods most appeals to you?”
  • “How could your Group organise to mobilise using more than one method?”
  • “What would you say to your family and friends to get them actively engaging with the crisis?”
  • What have you heard today that sparked your interest, is there a certain aspect that you may be interested in exploring?
  • What have you heard that you may be able to lend your skills and energy towards, how might you help your group to meet the strategic goals?

Break Out Session 4 - What is my next step?

Framing: Ideally we want Rebels to be able to identify their next step, whether it is small like “Invite my congregation to the Heading for Extinction Talk” or big like “Form a team to design a series of actions around air pollution in my area.” It could be that you wish to offer your skills in accountancy to strengthen the movement or that you wish to continue the rich discussions you’ve just experienced with your LG but bringing the Workshop to them.

  • “What will my next step be? What support do I need to do this?”
  • “My personal strategic goal is…”
  • What have you heard that you may be able to lend your skills and energy towards, how might you help your group to meet the strategic goals?


Gathering the Family

Nothing brings people together like the promise of good food! It’s the foundation of community, the sharing of bread (sorry coeliacs!) and telling of stories, everyone wants a slice of the gluten free cake!

Promotion can be hard, so we want to do most of the work for you!

Create the Zoom Event with Registration

Here is the guide on how to set up a Zoom meeting with pre-registration, we want to enable registration so that we can email all attendees afterwards and also give them the necessary information before the Workshop!

Once they register they will be shown a confirmation screen, here’s what you need to include in the description for that. Once you’ve set up the event Zoom will ask you to customise the email attendees will receive. You should also paste the description in here so it ends up in their inbox. Don’t want them to lose those useful links!

Tell People about it!

  • Here we have a list of templates you can use to promote the event.
  • These include Markdown for some sexy Mattermost posts, Long descriptions for Facebook events and short invitations for Twitter. Feel free to make your own and think about where you can advertise to attract some different folk along (as much as we love our “usual suspects!”)
  • We have also thrown together some images to use on Social Media, but again if you fancy your hand at making your own then we highly recommend XR France’s graphics generator.

Remember the key things to include in the promotion are:

  1. What is the Workshop - make it sexy!
  2. When is the Event?
  3. How do you sign up?
  4. What do you need to do beforehand.
  • Read the Strategy Document!
  • Have a look at the discussion points / scope questions.
  • How do Break Out Rooms Work?
  1. What the Structure is / What to expect?
  2. How to contact the Organisers about access needs etc.?

Consider promoting the Event in these Channels

Although there may be other spaces you can use to reach your rebels!

  1. Social Media (Facebook / Twitter / Instagram etc).
  2. Your Mailing List.
  3. Mattermost.
  4. Messaging Apps (Telegram / WhatsApp / Signal etc).

Reaching the “Unusual Suspects”

We all know who the familiar faces are in our groups, but how can we reach beyond them? Consider ways to ensure the invitation is “planted” in Local Groups, maybe you can drop by a general meeting or two… Reach out to XRYouth and see if they are up for promoting the event… Or consider using Rebel Ringers to call the rebels who may not be checking social media or Mattermost! Sometimes a verbal invite means a lot!

Measuring the Ingredients

So you are ready to get cooking, let's get all the stuff out of the cupboards and make sure we have it ready!

Identify the Team

Is everyone ready, do they know what they have to do? Check the basics, does the note taker have access to the Harvest Doc? Does Techie know how to create Break Out Rooms and talk attendees through Pinning? Do the facilitators have the Script to hand? Who will be sharing their Screen? If it’s not the Host then ensure they are made Co-host or screen sharing is enabled on the day!

Harvest Document

Make sure you have a pre-existing doc with your chosen questions on it and space for each Break out Room to type. Remember we will be sharing a blank doc with the Rebels to start with and the questions will be pasted in before each Break out Session. Harvest Template.

Follow Up Email

Have your follow up email ready to send after the session. You will want to include:

  • The Harvest Document.
  • The Strategy Documents.
  • The Complete Session Pack (Slides, Script & Instructions).
  • Any Next Steps specific to your group.
  • Contact Details.

Aim to have this sent out within 24hrs of finishing your session.

Run a Test!

This is a long workshop with quite tight timings, you will want to have at least a short practice with the full team. Make sure the techies know how to open break out rooms smoothly by setting them up in advance, that everyone knows what their prompts are and it’s clear how the facilitators will share the load. When holding a 3hr session there is nothing worse than losing 30 mins to confusion!

Join the Zoom early to land

Invite the team to join the call 30 mins before the session. This will allow you to straighten out any last things, to fully land in the space and be ready to greet the incoming rebels. Make sure that when you are joining the session that your zoom name is something that identifies you as part of the facilitation team! Otherwise you may be stuck in the waiting room!

Rename Role Holders

Once in the Zoom session we recommend renaming everyone in the facilitation team to display their role, this way Rebels will know who to message if they are having a problem.

Throw it all in the Pan

Time to mix it all together and throw it in the pan. Season to taste and get it sizzling hot, these discussions are pure gold!

So you now have everything you need to get cracking!

Please take copies of each of these before you make any edits as these templates will be shared with many people!

Take a breath, count to ten, and welcome your rebels with some tunes! You’ve got this.

Timings and Prompts for facilitation team are in the Script for the session. Keep an eye on the time. This Workshop can be 2 ½ hours long but will likely run to 3 hours if you’re not careful.

If you are running low on time consider:

Clarifying Questions:

You can shorten these to a couple of minutes by asking rebels to put any questions they have in the chat. Facilitators can then answer them as they see them or answer them later in the session, even at the end.

Feedback from Break Out Sessions:

I’m sure we have all experienced workshops where the feedback sections take a long time, especially when you have a lot of Break Out Rooms. Here are a few suggestions to make these shorter!

  1. Longest: Asking someone from each break out group to feed back the key points from their discussions can take 2 mins per BO room (even when asking rebels to be quick!).
  2. Mid Length: Ask rebels to post their key points in the chat and if they want to say them in the session to raise their hand or zoom hand. You can then call on as many people as you have the time for. You’ll want to call on at least 2-3 people - 4-6 mins.
  3. Shortest: Ask rebels to post their key points in the chat, then the facilitators can mention them as they pop up. Can take as long as you want. You can start the breaks while people are still typing!
Dinner is Served!

All your rebels are now lying back in a food coma, hopefully they haven't eaten too much! As they go off to digest all that you have offered them take a moment to reflect on your gathering before clearing up.

Palate Cleanser - Follow Up Email

You should have it already written, just copy it into an email and send it off. Consider it sowing the seeds as everything Rebels need to carry this discussion forward is in there, and you deserve a rest!

Gratitude - Debrief

Before stacking the plates take some time to look back at the beautiful meal your Rebels devoured. Book in a debrief session a day or two after the session where you can meet with your team to discuss how it went, what you learned and anything you’d change. If you have any suggestions on improving the Workshop please let us know!

Doing the Dishes - Answering the Questions

There is something meditative about cleaning up after a party. During the session you asked rebels to post any questions they had about the Strategy itself into the chat. Please send a copy of the questions to and if there is something overwhelming then please highlight it to your Strategy Rep, we want to ensure people understand the Strategy when it first lands with them.

Work with your Strategy Rep or connect with others to try to answer each question. Ideally you’ll be able to email out the answers to your attendees after a week or so. Don’t push yourself to get it done in a day but make sure not to drop it.

It would be extra amazing if you could also post the answers to the questions on the Rebel Toolkit. For more information on how to add resources to the Toolkit check out our guides.

Revision #7
Created Fri, Apr 16, 2021 10:25 AM by Alix Emery
Updated Fri, Apr 30, 2021 3:32 PM by Ned Evans