Presentations: The Right Way

When it comes to presentations, I rarely worried over my visuals or whether I would any, but instead on how nervous I would get. Every time I present I lead up to the day completely nervous and annoyed, but as I present I just want to finish so I try to be presentable. Now, after ready some information on presentations, more specifically on the visuals, I realized that I haven’t put much attention on what makes a good visual.

I knew the hard way of not filling up Powerpoint slides with information but instead use the slides as a support for further clarification on what I am talking about. I knew that bullet points were good, as long as they don’t take over my voice with reading by the audience; I also never found the point of using 3D pictures, models, and animations. Using this always seemed distracting to me, but I didn’t know they were something serious when talking about giving proper presentations. I was taught that simplifying my visuals was the way to go, so I kept my visual aid to maybe some lines of words and/or some pictures; mainly make sure my voice and information presented everything I have to show.

Teaching students how to properly present material, from what I’ve seen, is really difficult because many students do not like to present in front of classmates and this causes them to overload on visual help, not only for the audience but for themselves. I used to fill my board, or Powerpoint with information just to distract my audience from me so I wouldn’t be so nervous. This hurt my presentations in a major way. I didn’t fully learn how to create a balance with what I say and my visuals until my last year in middle school, even though my teachers before hand kept saying not to use too many pictures or words, or hide behind my cards or board. One can incorporate new strategies for presentations by simply teaching with examples so students can develop their own versions of what is being shown as a good presentation. Many students’ roots of poor presentation strategies and skills go to being nervous in front of people and this can carry on to later on in school but through good examples in lessons, one can learn from a teacher.

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