What I learned from writing my presentation

I just wanted to go through some points about doing my presentation of my learning contract.

  1. Doing the presentation clarified my mind! This is the most important, for me. Having to distill my learning contract down into a presentation really showed some holes in my learning contract. It got me thinking about the overall ‘arch’ of the masters.
  2. It’s show AND tell. I didn’t want my presentation to be just slides of what I was saying, so, I went to the other end of the spectrum – my slides have almost no words on them and are simply an accompaniment to my talking.
  3. Google Presentation tool rocks! For the first time I used the Presentation Tool in Google Apps. I knew that I would have to be showing this in Hangouts, so I hoped there was some simpatico between the two (there really isn’t). But, it is a very easy to use tool and certainly the lack of features (that I wouldn’t have used) made the learning curve easy.
  4. Write a script. Trying to remember all the salient points in each slide at the time of the presentation is going to be tough. Read: impossible. I wrote script notes.
  5. Read it. Then rewrite to what you actually said. I think like most people when I write it is not in the same ‘tone’ as when I talk. So, I went over my script reading it aloud (many times!) and then rewrote the script to match how I actually would say what I wrote.
  6. Clip art is a beautiful thing. My presentation is not ever going to be seen outside of my cohort/tutors, so, I can use any clip art I wanted. When searching for clip art I recommend
    1. use google image search
    2. if you are looking for illustrations (not photos) add ‘png’ to the search string (eg ‘house png’ or ‘arrow png’)
    3. Find the biggest possible pic so it will scale down better
    4. Don’t waste too much time. Pick the first thing that works.
  7. Your dog is not a person. Giving your presentation to your dog, or cat or gerbil, even a dozen times, does not prepare you for talking to a human. Giving it to a person is unnerving, so do it once before the big day.
  8. Don’t BS too much. This is more about the Learning Contract. Yes, I know we all have no real clue as to how it is going to play out, so to a certain extent of course the is a work of Fantasy (without the Unicorns and Elves) but don’t reach for the impossible. You are not going to interview Steve Spielberg. You’re going to have a difficult enough time interviewing Manny Spielberg who runs the Deli around the corner!
  9. Conversely, Dream Big. You’re spending a chunk of change on this masters and maybe this is your one shot to use the clout (?!) of Raindance, or of doing a Masters, to get something exciting done.  What have you always wanted to do in the film business. Try to do it.
  10. Dammit, Tiska is right. Your Masters is like making a movie. And so, like making a movie….
    1. You need to brainstorm.
    2. You need to approach things from different angles and get yourself out of your comfort zone.
    3. You need to be able to admit you are wrong and that other people are right.
    4. You need to keep the end in mind.
    5. You need to not get caught up in the technology.
    6. You need to get the help of others.
    7. You will learn that your ideas are not unique – but how you PRESENT your ideas can be.
    8. Your learning contract is the blueprint (the script). You can/will/must do rewrites based on changing situations.
    9. Hire a cinematographer. Preferably from Eastern Europe or Scandinavia, or with a name that sounds like it. (this means: look through someone else’s eyes at your plans)
    10. Sound is as important as picture.
    11. Zoom in on the gun. If something is going to make an impact, SHOW IT.

But…what do I know!? There is every possibility that my presentation and learning contract suck. These are just the things I think I learned.