Monday, 26 February 2018

Tips On Presenting

Presenting is seen as a staple skill for teachers... but it is rarely explicitly taught as such. When you walk into classrooms or staff meetings, often the most basic of rules are ignored

Colleagues reading out irrelevant slides, robotic monotone delivery, over enthusiastic use of animations, tiny fonts, crammed slides: have any of these simple errors ever been seen in your school?

One of the greatest presenters was Steve Jobs - Apple CEO. His presentations appeared flawless and smooth... but this wasn't an accident. Jobs was legendary for his preparation. He would rehearse on stage for many hours over many weeks prior to the launch of a major product. He knew every detail of every demo and every font on every slide. As a result the presentation was delivered flawlessly. 

People will often say, “I’m not as smooth as Jobs was.” Well, neither was he! Hours and hours of practice made Jobs look polished, casual, and effortless.

So painful, awkward presentations don't need to be this way. Here are some simple tips to purge those presentation pains:
  • Practise: how many times will you have read and re read your slides before presenting? Can you ad lib? Do you have to constantly refer to your notes? The more you know your material the more confident you will be... and it means that technical glitches won't throw you off balance.
  • Use the tools available: Google Slides has a great explore tool that will help you lay out text and images effectively (see the video below). That way you can concentrate on the content and not worry about the formatting
  • Make sure you start the slideshow... often presenters/teachers forget to click 'present' which means that slides are much smaller and harder to read. 
  • Use the notes section below each slide to carry your additional information. This helps stop you from just rereading the content on the slide and declutters the presentation.
  • Mix up the layout: include some images (ideally personalised to your school/audience) and ensure that slides look different... this helps to keep it more engaging for the audience

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