I used the name ‘PowerPoint’ in the title of this post just for the sake of famous quote although over last 5 years I have come to use Keynote more. Yet, I see in my school almost every teacher and administrator, apart from the few ‘cool’ ones 🙂 still using PowerPoint, starting by taking school’s template which itself, in my opinion, needs a big rethink.
In many of the school lessons, workshops, conferences, keynotes and all those instances when a presentation is either deemed a requirement or is used just for the sake of it I still see the power getting sucked out of the whole exercise and point of ‘death’ approach swiftly.
By mentioning all that above does not mean that at times I have not fallen into the same trap of using standard template with bland and bulleted text… a lot of text… on slides which simply move from one overwhelmingly text rich page to another resulting in the ‘death’ of the point I actually wanted to make! This had to be done when a presentation was expected but not required and I was to leave the presented material with the audience for ‘record’ in case they were actually listening to me repeating the words on screen and not jotting down the ‘highlights’ of my presentation. Now that I think about this and am writing down this blog post another questions comes to my mind – yes irrelevant to this course and post on surface but perhaps deeply connected? – If in a presentation the goal is to get the message across to audience hence you need their full, undivided attention till the last ‘slide’ then the more image rich ‘zen presentation’ style is perfect but then what happens if they come up to you and say “I forgot to take notes – could you please send me your presentation?”. My answer to my own question is: either teach our young ones to get tuned with visual literacy more so that their cognitive skills are developed in the way where retention and quality of information collected through visuals is better than the ones jotted down on piece of paper with pen or, well, record your presentation and then upload it to the web: share with your audience 😉
Back to my own lousy presentation. Here it is:
As you may see this was a pure ‘death by powerpoint’ style and if I had to do this all over again I would make it effective, engaging and more visually appealing by:
- Collect images and videos from my school directly targeting the topic of my presentation.
- Add text only to highlight a point or make a heading when moving on to the next point.
- Turn my presentation into a movie with the new slides and my voiceover for narration if it is for online viewing, or
- Request someone to make a video of myself while presenting and then upload the video for audience’s reference later when they need.