Breaking the camel’s back

24 03 2009

I must say the Pecha Kucha slideshow was nearly the straw that broke this camel’s back. As a learner myself, this particular assignment has made me so much more aware of what my own students could be experiencing when given an assignment.

1. FEAR. When we watched the Jobs and Gates videos and the TED presentation, I was so intimidated that my mind went into a deep freeze for a few days. I couldn’t face the task. My fear was of course compounded by …

2. FINDING A TOPIC. I drew a blank on this. I couldn’t think how to present a topic in 10 slides with only 20 seconds to speak per slide. Days of heart palpitations passed before I decided to focus on GoogleDocs. 

3. STORYBOARDING THE SLIDESHOW. I must thank the IT teacher at my last school who showed me how to storyboard for visual presentations such as FlashMovies. After a take-out meal from North Park Noodle, I spent an hour or so storyboarding the slides. That meant …

4. CREATING THE PRESENTATION. This I did in one afternoon after classes. I had decided to use my own photos. I felt they had more relevance to my topic, than images from Flickr. I also wanted to experiment with animations, because one of my students designed a tutorial with great animations. She directed me to the website (see, learning from my students). Stale showed me how to take screenshots and these I used to show parts of GoogleDocs that my students are using.

5. THE SCRIPT. Different from the Camstudio assignment, I did not write a script. Instead I used the notes section of the PowerPoint to write down key reminders related to topic. I also tried to memorise the visual order of the slides to ensure a logical sequence. 

6. LEARNING FROM OTHERS. I was fascinated by the other presentations. There was something to learn from each presenter: either their presentation style or the presentation content. I found that I would like to learn how to have multiple images fade in and out in the same slide. How was that done? I want to watch some of them again, because there were so many that I felt that there were much that I missed. 

Essentially, it comes down to realising what the possible problems are that may inhibit my students and decide on what other skills they may need in order to complete a presentation in an effective and concise manner suited to their target audience.

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3 responses

29 03 2009
taramcollins

I actually quite enjoyed making the Pecha Kucha PowerPoint. I also did struggle in the beginning to think of a topic to present in a certain number of slides, but once I finally figured out what to do, I had a lot of fun. I do like this way of presenting as it makes you the presenter think clearly of what information to include and what to say rather than showing a 50 slide PowerPoint. It also makes the audience pay attention as they know they’ve only got a short time to listen to you. The only part I was apprehensive about was delivering the PowerPoint, and I also think so were most people in the group. Let’s hope that people adopt this new style of presenting so I won’t be subjected to information overload by ‘Death by PowerPoint’.

30 03 2009
Joni Mertz

I agree, the Pecha Kucha introduced me to a new way of presenting. I think students will love this.
I also think that it is great for teachers to experience being a student again because it reminds them of what kids have to go through daily! Just look how nervous we were as teachers presenting in front of each other for 3 minutes, now imagine what it must be like for the kids!

31 03 2009
peggykelly

Although I did find this exercise challenging, (for all the reasons you mentioned above) I did find to it to be a very useful exercise; it forced me to think about presentations differently. How can I possibly present anything meaningful in this amount of time. Based on what was presented my question was answered. I was impressed with everybody’s presentation; we all stuck to the time limit, the pictures and content were relevant to each topic. Too my surprise! Not only can I remember the topics that some people presented, but some of the content.

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