Death by Powerpoint

Keep the crowd engaged!
I've spent a lot of time recently making presentations on how to make presentations in different classrooms around my school. It helps, of course, to model what a good presentation is and is not. The first decision I want a presenter to make when they are using technology to make a presentation is to consider if the presentation will be given in real time. If given in real time, the digital presentation needs far less text material.

A powerpoint/ keynote/ slides presentation in which the presenter reads all of the information contained upon a slide is a recipe for BORING. It insults the audience's intelligence, it wastes time and it makes it look like the presenter is ill-informed. Finally, it ensures that the presentation is devoid of spontaneity.

Even more dynamic presentation tools such as emazeprezi and magisto will quickly lose audience attention once the "wow" factor wears off if the presenter falls into reading all that's written on the screen to the audience.

The digital tool should capture main ideas. It should incorporate images and graphic organizers. But more importantly, have a story to tell. It should have arc and direction. Be engaging. Maybe you don't need a presentation tool at all.

Powerpoint is seen as cliche in some tech circles. The problem isn't the tool, though it never would be my first choice. It is how we use that tool. Do we teach kids how to make oral presentations? For more, click here.

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