ATE Central

The Toothpick Factory


Lesson Description
Toothpick Factory: Soft Skills is a hands-on activity from the Florida Advanced Technological Education (FLATE) Center and is intended to help students develop teamwork, communication, and leadership skills. This activity will also help students understand the manufacturing workplace. The following two shorter activities are also included: Communication and Employability Skills. "These hands-on simulations allow participants to become aware, exercise and reflect upon a set of soft skills affecting teamwork. The additional modules focus on basic concepts of materials, materials movement, human factors and productivity."

Lesson Contents:
Two facilitator guides are included, an original guide and an updated version. The original version includes a lesson on processing and productivity. The updated version incorporates the processing and productivity lesson, and includes a lesson on soft skills and a market response activity. 

Communication and employability skills activities are also included. During the Communication activity, "students are challenged to identify the soft skill communication." During the Employability Skills activity, "students are challenged to identify soft skills/employability skills such as communication and teamwork." These challenges can be used in conjunction with The Toothpick Factory simulation game for soft skills or can be used as standalone challenges. 

The facilitators guide is to be used with the Soft Skills PowerPoint presentation that is included. This presentation discusses workplace skills and serves as a guide to the activity. 

A Toothpick Factory Kit is provided and includes documents to be used with the Soft Skills activity. These documents include a table of contents, three student handouts, soft skills production scorecards, team and client team instructions, and finished order tracking sheets for completed toothpicks. 

Below is a list of the files contained within the .zip attachment. The size of each file is included in parenthesis.

ToothpickFactory (15 files, 41.2 MB)

  • Facilitator Guide (01a - Facilitator_Guide_for_production.pdf 621 KB)
  • Communication Lesson Plan (communication.doc 507 KB)
  • ReplacementForFactoryKits
    • Table of Contents (2 Table of contents updated.doc 197 KB)
    • Student Handouts (3 Student_Handouts_ALL.ppt 291 KB)
    • Finished Order Tracking (4 Finished_order_tracking.doc 569 KB)
    • Production Scorecard (5a CT_Response updated.ppt 369 KB)
    • Client Team Instructions (5a Instructions_CT updated.ppt 16.1 MB)
    • Team Instructions (5a Instructions_PT.ppt 17 MB)
    • Soft Skills Scorecard (5a Soft_Skills Scorecard updated.doc 121 KB)
    • Facilitator Guide II (Facilitator_Guide updated 2016.pdf 589 KB)
    • Intro and Soft Skills Presentation (Intro and Soft Skills Presentation.pptx 4.1 MB)
  • Flyer (TPF Flyer 2016.pdf 411 KB)
  • Employability Skills Lesson Plan (TPF Short Shift Lesson.pdf 248 KB)
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