On Wednesday I had an opportunity to present to a sub-set of the faculty on some ideas for improving their use of presentation software. It’s been a rub with me that teachers (and administrators – myself included!) have abused slides as the 21st century equivalent of the overhead projector.
Embarrassingly enough, until I started reading and researching about presenting, the only rule of thumb I followed was, “Don’t read directly from the slides.” Although that’s great advice and a wonderful start, it’s only the tip of the iceberg as it relates to creating effective presentations.
The more time I spent at staff development presentations where presenters were telling administrators and teachers about “effective delivery of instruction,” but not practicing what they were preaching, the more frustrated I continued to get. You can’t stand in front of a room full of educators reading your slides bullet-by-bullet and not expect to hear mass snoring.
The most rewarding thing to me was that six of the attendees actually stayed after the presentation with their laptops open and asked me pretty detailed questions about how I designed my slides and how they could improve some of their dated presentations. We ended up hanging out for about a half hour and I am planning to schedule some time to follow up with each of them in their classrooms to maybe watch and provide feedback on their presentations.
- The PDF (11 MB) – I embellished a little on my presentation notes to make it closer to what I actually said rather than just my outline.
- The Keynote (12 MB) – The full presentation in Keynote.
Update 12/16/07: Now posted with audio at Slideshare. Enjoy!