Today, I watched a webinar on how to create effective presentations. It focused mostly on powerpoint presentation tips and how to engage audiences, but there were definitely ideas in there that could be applied to any sort of presentation. It made me wonder how often I get caught up in teaching and forget about the entertainment.
That’s not to say that my classrooms should be a party, but there is some truth in the idea of bringing entertainment to presentations, specifically in the classroom. In the context I work in, classes are supplementary to formal, secular education and are attended once a week on a weeknight or weekend. This means that students are coming to me after a long day of school or a long week of school and instead of doing homework, watching T.V. or relaxing, they are in another classroom. This makes it especially difficult to get them engaged and interested in the content I cover.
During the webinar, the term “edutainment” was discussed and I started thinking about what would happen if, as an educator, I constantly thought about my lessons from the edutainment perspective. When I created presentations, would I thoroughly think through the entertainment part of it all to ensure students were being pushed to engage? More importantly, would students find these techniques engaging and want to get more involved and pay more attention? This may seem like an obvious question with an obvious answer, but I still wonder to what extent this would work, especially in my own classrooms.
How much should added entertainment play a part in any classroom and how much should we just focus on the activities that teach our students?
For anyone interested in the webinar, please visit: http://home.edweb.net/making-your-content-sing-effective-presentations/. EdWeb has some great online communities for educators as well as some awesome webinars that are offered on a very regular basis. Check them out!