More grad tools

October 29, 2008

This week I was exposed to a site for online brainstorming.  I wanted to write about several connections I had related to this site.

First, from a grad student perspective I have been reading and learning about the importance of brainstorming when creating presentations.  Using sticky notes was one method or suggestion given for brainstorming.  This site looked like another good way for individuals and groups to brainstorm and plan out presentations.

This site also reminded me a lot of Inspiration software.  Inspirations is used a lot in the school setting for brainstorming, making concept maps, creating graphic organizers.  I can see a lot of students using because they are so familiar with Inspiration.  Or another way to say it is the skills they learn using Inspiration are very transferable.


Grid System

October 23, 2008

For my most recent project I am using a grid system to help me design my slides in Keynote. I read about the grid system in Nancy Duarte’s book slide:ology. I really wanted to have unity throughout all of my slides since my project needed to be 30-60 slides in length. In slide:ology Duarte says, “A grid system provides as flexible way to organize your content.”  If found this to be true as I was working on my slides. It gave the the flexibility I needed while at the same time providing structure to the slides. The grid I used was a four column gird. I have posted a few pictures of the slides I created with the grid still in place. I will definitely use the grid again when I create my next project.  

Added value to a speech

October 14, 2008

One of my most recent projects was to find a speech and use words and or images to add value to that speech.  I decided on Bush’s speech to the nation after September 11th.  

I start the presentation by flashing words across the screen.  I pulled these words directly out of the speech.  I also used photos from the Department of Defense that are in the public domain.  Each photo is displayed for about 19 seconds.  I pictures to add emotion, but did not want them to take away from the speech.  Hopefully the timing of the photos accomplishes this task.


October 6, 2008

In our readings this week the concept of storyboarding was presented in Nancy Duarte’s books slide:ology and  in chapter four of Garr Reynolds’  book Presentation Zen.  Both authors emphasize how important planning is to any multimedia presentation.  They also encourage people to do their planning with paper and pencil away from the computer.

The readings this week were conformation of what I am doing in the classroom.  For each multimedia presentation that my students create in class I require that they plan their presentation on a storyboard.  I have to admit that I do not require or give as much time to this step as I probably should.  Time is a valuable and limited resource in the classroom, and it is hard to devote days to brainstorming and planning.  This is something that I want to work on and continue to emphasize in my classroom.

In Duarte’s books she recommends devoting 36-90 hours of time to developing and hour-long presentation.   As a teach, devoting this much time to a presentation would be great, but it seems unrealistic.  Most teachers have more than one presentation to give each week and often times more than one per day.  There is no way a teacher can devote this much time to each presentation or lesson.  The challenge for teachers is how can we develop high quality effective lessons in a shorter time period?  The good news is we can evaluate, reuse, and modify lessons from year to year.