Monday, July 1, 2013

Ignite your (students) Presentations



Storytelling is foundational to all human knowledge.  It is how information was passed from generation to generation.  Throughout history, those with the finest oratory skills often held the most prestigious posts in society.  Despite the rise of social media and various forms of digital communication, the ability to convey ones thoughts verbally (in front of a group) is still a highly desirable skill.

I basically talk to groups of teachers for a living.  The mere thought of this would have horrified my adolescent self.  While I was required to take public speaking courses in both high school and college, neither helped me with my public speaking phobia.  Thankfully my own children will have a different experience.  The Common Core and specifically the Speaking and Listening Standards (SL) embed these skills throughout the curriculum, scaffolding this skill in authentic settings.  

Enter Ignite, a fun and engaging presentation format that lends itself equally well to both professional development and student presentations.  There are only two simple rules to Ignite: 
  1. Your talk must be guided by a slideshow.
  2. The show should consist of 20 slides that auto advance every 15 seconds.
The result: A self paced presentation that forces the presenter to examine what is truly important about the information they are sharing.  Additionally, the auto-advancing slides help with drifting.  I have a bad habit of chasing rabbits  when I am presenting and once again, auto advancing slides do not permit for those types of indulgences.  

It really is that simple.  To get you started, I have embedded two videos on the subject.  The first is an Ignite on giving Ignites and the second is an education specific example.  Also, HERE you will find my auto advancing Ignite PPT template.  HERE is a Google Slide Ignite template too.


Ignite explained in an Ignite format


An education/PD Ignite

photo credit: Tc Morgan via photopin cc

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