Presentation Can Only Get Better!

It is only very recently that I have started putting any of my work on google slides to present lessons to my students.  I generally use google docs, plus notebook for my smartboard. Therefore, the idea I am sharing today is a couple of slides I have transferred from my smartboard doc to a google slides, purely for this purpose.  Guy Kawasaki highlighted the importance of understanding the context of any presentation therefore, these slides were shared prior to my students taking their MAPS test, to highlight some strategic strategies to use when they didn’t know an answer versus picking a letter at random.

As the smartboard doc is able to screen each line at a time, it enabled me to show only the focus point at once, then we would discuss it and define examples together on the whiteboard. However…. even though I am using color and bolding, on transferring it to my google slides I will be changing it in two major ways.  Firstly, each point will be on a separate slide.  Each point will either be supported with an example or will only show a visual so students can see exactly what the strategy means, or they will be able to identify the suggestion for themselves versus being shown.  

Presentation Zen overview, highlighted a couple of key ideas I have taken away which I would like to apply to this presentation.  Firstly, the simplicity of it, so it is unforgettable and the students can identify the key idea.  Some may disagree, but when there becomes too much color, or too many images, my students become easily distracted by everything, and often miss what the main point is, so for me, simplicity is key.  Even though some articles suggested adding humor, or telling a story, some students get confused by all the ‘fluff’ that we teachers sometimes use.  Keep it simple is going to be my motto. The second big takeaway from this weeks readings was the point that the ‘slides don’t stand alone’.  Now prior to reading this, for me, I was thinking that the big idea must be on the slide, then extra information I add during the presentation are explanations / elaborations or examples.  Therefore for me, the slide could stand alone so long as the main point was conveyed.  So, I am sitting on the fence about this, however I will make a reference document to support the presentation that the students will have, highlighting all the information relating to each slide, including both the slide and orally added elaborations / explanations.

This new, and much needed ‘ renovated’ test-taking strategies presentation, along with other sections, will form part of my final project.  I am really looking forward to ‘playing’ and seeing how I can make this presentation effectively reach all of my students.

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4 Responses to Presentation Can Only Get Better!

  1. Lauren Purdy says:

    Hi Bettina,

    The dreaded MAPS test. I really like your idea of sharing strategic strategies to help students choose the best answer on a test. I also agree with your changes – keep it simple!

    With each point on a different slide, the students should be able to pay attention to the point without getting bogged down with all of the words. As for the slide standing alone, I agree that having the main idea would probably be enough. Or if you do decide to back up each point with an example and/or an image, I would definitely stick to the mantra “less is more”.

    This article has some great tips that might come in handy with your final project. For some reason this quote resonated with me; “Use as many slides as you need to make your point. No more. No less.” Personally, I was under the impression that keeping it simple, meant less slides. But if you need 80 slides to get the point across, use 80 slides.

    Good luck with the final project. I am interested to see how it turns out!


  2. Hi Bettina,
    It is really great that you are utilizing what you have learned and applying it to your presentations. I agree that the information needs to be portrayed in a way that is easily accessible to the students visually and content wise. Pairing my presentations down to the main idea has been successful for me and my students. They are much more easily able to focus on what the important message of the lesson.
    How did your lesson turn out? Did you feel like the students understood better because of the modifications that you made?

    • Hi Alison – this slide presentation is a bank of lessons, which I refer to through out the year, as certain slides highlight specific strategies I am teaching. Making them big, with a visual vs more writing, definitely made it easier for the students to identify the main point, plus it modeled for them what a slide should look like, therefore hopefully enabling them to take what they see, and use it in their own presentations.


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