8 Things I'm Grateful for This Thanksgiving

This Thanksgiving I’ve decided to focus some of my “gratitudinal” energies toward training and learning. Now, this doesn’t in any way mean that I am not grateful for my family, my co-workers, a roof over my head or the clothes on my body. I just feel like those are a given.

However perhaps by listing some of the training and learning things that I am grateful you’ll be able to consider some of the things you are grateful for and find renewed energy in your pursuits.

8 Things I Am Thankful for This Year

#1 - Rapid Authoring Tools

Picture this: the year was 2010 and I was in an Intro to Web Design class at university. The day’s lesson was on using HTML basic to format a page with a logo at the top and a body of text below it.

We spent the entire hour and a half building this one page.

At the end of the class period, we’d learned several of the basics, and begun memorizing things like <p> and </p>. Finally, my professor informed us that these basics were very important to know, but that there were many tools out there (such as Wordpress or Wix) that would help us develop great looking sites much faster.

I can’t imagine what our lives would be if we were still developing learning using these basic tactics rather than Rapid Authoring Tools like Captivate, Storyline, Lectora, or dominKnow.

The ability to quickly develop great looking training that is also engaging and available on mobile?

Now that’s something to be grateful for.

#2 - eLearning Games

Did you know that every day at 12 noon Mountain time a large group of eLearning Brothers employees gather to play tabletop games?

These games range from simple games like Tsuro to more complex games like Deception: Murder in Hong Kong. It’s a great opportunity for employees to spend time with one another and compete in a friendly way.

eLearning Games are not necessarily new, but there are some that are really knocking our socks off these days.

Inside the Training Arcade™ you’ll find games that are easily embedded in any course, work flawlessly on mobile, and are actually fun!

Each game, whether it be Quiz Jumper or Jeopardy!®, comes with a leaderboard mechanic that will get your learners coming back for more to beat a high score or settle a bet with a friend.

#3 - Gamification

Not a typo—this is different than games. Gamification is a much broader concept that really saw its rise when online communities with awards and influencers became prominent. If I wanted to earn that little “influencer” tag I had to participate in the conversation on the platform more, and THAT is gamification.

Seeing that mentality move into the training world has been exciting!

Never before have we seen so many learners that WANT to take our courses. We all want to earn that digital badge, earn the icon that says what we know, where we’ve been.

And I think it’s definitely worth my gratitude if people are asking for their next training course.

#4 - The Internet

And it’s not just for the memes.


The internet is a fantastic tool for learning.

Thanks to the internet we have LMS platforms where we can deploy courses that can then be accessed by learners all over the world. Thanks to the internet we can download templates and assets from sites like eLearning Brothers that help us streamline our design and development processes.

I mean, without the internet I’d have to print out the cutout people that you wanted, put them in an envelope, MAIL them to you, then you’d have to open them, take photos yourself of the printouts, and then upload them to your course.

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#5 - eLearning Resources

Not everyone went to school to become an eLearning professional. I know I didn’t. Yet life has twisted and turned and given many of us responsibility over training.

Luckily there are so many resources that you can get for free that can help you become a better eLearning professional.

In fact, right now eLearning Brothers offers free eBooks and Guides that you can download. They cover the topics like writing, blueprinting, strategy, and design. This is a growing pool of assets just from us, and the internet is filled with other great wisdom.

#6 - eLearning Blogs

I don’t receive a lot of magazines. Ok, I don’t receive any magazines. But if I did then I’d have to find a place to store them, and somehow remember where all the best articles are.

But with blogs, it’s like being subscribed to several magazines that are easily searchable and that are stored online. What’s more: they’re free. And I can share them with my friends without losing them myself.

eLearning Brothers has blogs. Like this one you’re reading right now. And we cover a range of topics from eLearning development to instructional design, to movie reviews, to beard assessment. We have thousands of blogs. You should read them.

#7 - YouTube

There was a knock on my door one Saturday morning and two people in light blue polo shirts stood smiling at me.

“Would you like to be a Nielsen family?” they asked.

“Absolutely, that’d be great!”

They then asked a few followup questions.

“Who do you use for your TV service?”

My response? “Streaming services.”

“Do you have an antenna?”

“No. Haven’t had one for over ten years.”

And with that, they walked away. I guess I’ll never get to be a Nielsen family.

What started this whole online thing anyway?

Remember back in 2005 when your friend emailed your hotmail account with a link to this thing called YouTube? Next thing you knew you’d lost seven hours watching cat videos, a woman “sittin’ on the toilet” and a guy telling you to “hide yo kids, hide yo wife.”

Now almost 15 years later you can still find such nonsensical things on the platform, but also an incredibly large number of useful tutorials, tips, and tricks there.

The eLearning Brothers YouTube channel has hundreds of videos that will help you become an eLearning rockstar. You should watch them.

#8 - Designers That Make eLearning Interesting and Fun

Not that long ago training was just…

Well it was bad.

Luckily it has gotten so much better!



These days, the battle to beat back boring training is going well! More design professionals are getting involved in eLearning development and the visual appeal has increased exponentially.

Our asset library is an enormous and valuable resource filled with templates and other tools built by genius designers and developers.

Looking to increase your own design chops? Check out our blog section focused on graphic design.

Did I miss anything that you’re grateful for? What did you think of my list?

Hope you enjoy your holiday season, and may you ever be an eLearning Rockstar!