Zoom =

Analogizing on Zoom

Have pairs come up with analogies (i.e., comparisons of two otherwise unlike things) to describe the idea or concept you’re focusing on. Ask the pairs to be specific about how it captures all of the elements of that concept and to be as specific as possible. Give them time to consider multiple analogies, searching for the best fit.

Step-by-Step Instructions

  1. Let the group know that for this activity they're going to be working in pairs. Each pair will be tasked with coming up with a specific analogy and using this analogy to get a better understanding of a particular concept or idea. For example, facilitators are like [manual labor job type] in that...
  2. In the pairs they should start by listing relevant options for the analogy. Encourage them to write a number of ideas before moving to discussing and picking one to dig into.
  3. Once they've listed options and had a brief discussion, the pair should zero in on a particular analogy to flush out. On a piece of paper have them list all the ways this analogy can relate. Encourage them to be detailed and specific.
  4. Once the pairs have had a chance to thoroughly discuss the analogy at length bring them back to the main group to debrief if desired.


Pairs can use the chat in their breakout rooms as their digital piece of paper (or the whiteboard screen share if this is a function you've introduced to the group previously). Otherwise, just encourage one partner to handwrite the notes on a piece of paper.

Substituting Apps

If you're using apps other than Zoom, here are the specific things your software will need to be able to do:

Ability to make breakout rooms.

Additional Resources


Author HeadshotTacoma, WA

Activity by Meg Bolger

Co-developer of Facilitator Cards. Co-author of Unlocking the Magic of Facilitation. Adamant believer that facilitation can change the world.

Facilitation Testers Needed

This activity by Meg Bolger would really benefit from other facilitators testing it, tweaking it, and reporting back. If you give it a try in your virtual facilitation, all we ask is that you tell us how it went.

The main things we're wondering are regarding the context you facilitated it in (with whom, and toward what goal), how well it worked (what worked and what didn't), and in what ways you altered the instructions to make it work for you.