First, let me describe one of my pet peeves:
I’ve signed up for an educational technology conference. I’m going to be there with 5 of my colleagues. We’re planning our divide and conquer strategy since there are so many amazing ideas out there that we want to see and experience them ALL!
I walk into my first session which starts off with a great slide with information on the presenter, including photo, and how to get in touch with them: twitter handle, link to the slideshare, email address, etc. Then comes the next slide – a beautifully crafted (not) blur of words that fills the screen that they proceed to talk about for the next 15 – 20 minutes. Or more…
As the saying goes, a picture is worth a thousand words. Use more images and less text.I’ll summarize the main points here:OK – so it’s usually not that bad, but come on #edtech people, you know better! My conference high has turned into a devastating low, because I have FOWO (see below) and because most of the people out there have not taken the awesome presentation that Ken Shelton has delivered.
- Don’t use the default settings – create your own mark.
- Effective presentations are also good stories. Humor helps, as well as a beginning, middle and end.
- One concept per slide. It’s not like you have to pay for using extra slides – give your audience the chance to digest just one thing at a time – the brain, technically, cannot multitask!
- Never EVER just read the slides. If the slides were meant to be read, it would be a word document, not a slide presentation. Also, use images on EVERY slide (they should take up about 80% of your screen real estate) to emphasize your message. After all, a picture is worth a thousand words!
- The font you use says something about your message – play with font size and color to emphasize points. Use sans-serif for presentations; examples are Futura, Rockwell and Optima. NEVER use Comic Sans.
- We’re well into the 21st Century; don’t print or photocopy your presentation – share it online instead.
- Any tool (Prezi, Powepoint, Slideshare, Google Presentation, etc…) will do, it’s the utilization of the tool that is key!