AAAARRGH My FIRST EVER lecture... Please, some helpful tips n hints??????

by Kudra 21 Replies latest jw friends

  • HAL9000

    Hi Kudra,

    Scully has given you some really great suggestions - I've given lectures to a number of audiences over the years (undergrads to senior management & government officals) and have found that "distractions" like Powerpoint or a movie etc are really useful, especially if you feel self-conscious - you can turn the lights down (not off!) and this can help you to get over the feeling of being in the spotlight with all eyes on you. Also consider getting a remote controller for the PC - I've got a Logitech R-RB5 that is designed to work with Powerpoint - as this allows you to move around the room & not be tied to the mouse (or have to run back to it). It is worth its weight in gold. Also make sure that your presentation & materials are on the PC - not a network - as I have had the experience of losing network access (and the presentation) - and have had to run "dry"

    Flip charts can be useful, but you need to feel in control of your subject to use these effectively.

    Yes, humour does work, but in carefully judged quantities and appropriate to the subject matter. Also consider using handouts etc.

    Hope that this helps


  • Hortensia

    a little humor, but not insulting or put-downs. A little showmanship - sometimes I ask each person to state his/her name, and maybe why he is there or what she knows about the subject. I also recite all the names we've heard before I go on to the next person - so that by the time everyone has finished I'm repeating every name in the class. It's mainly so I memorize the names and it looks impressive. I have good outlines and plenty of material, but I sprinkle it with little jokes - "oh, so no one here knows anything about tui na? Then I can make it up as I go along and you won't know the difference?" Then blah blah blah lecture - letting people know they can interrupt me to ask questions but they have to stay on topic. When it's time for a break I repeat the very corny old joke about the ancient Chinese saying that the mind can only absorb what the seat can endure. That's it for my tips - introducing yourself is important, of course, and it's OK to show passion for the subject. Throw in some questions so they have to reason a bit.

  • Twitch

    This site may be helpful. I've worked in the AV presentation industry for 15 years, have seen more than the average number of lectures/presentations and most if not all these tips have been common and used by the best speakers that I've seen.

    Good luck, er, break a leg,.....


    Great tips guysoops, and gals.

  • Honesty

    I may be able to arrange it so that a fellow Tennessean who has an intricate working knowledge of Global

    Warming could accompany you on stage to assist you...

  • parakeet

    Kudra, many years ago I was a teaching assistant for a required freshmen 101 course at a university in New England, and I was terrified when I started, too. Here are some tips I hope will help:

    1. Don't worry if you can't make the subject interesting to all of the students. Some will be interested; some will need a nuclear explosion to get their attention. Unlike high school, they don't have to be there in your class. You have the upper hand.

    2. If you're a bit shaky about your knowledge of the subject, just remember, you only need to stay 15 minutes ahead of them. They'll never know the difference.

    3. If any student starts acting like a high school brat, threaten to drop him/her from the course. You have the authority to do that. They need to learn that, unlike high school, their presence there is optional. It's their time, their (or mommy and daddy's) money that's being wasted, neither of which is your problem. One kid gave me some trouble my first semester (making clown faces every time I looked at him). I detained him after class, told him if he acted like an ass again at any time during the semester, I would drop him like six-inch putt. He got the message. No more problems.

    4. If you can, enjoy. Most freshmen are pretty scared too, and the sooner you and they can relax a bit, the more fun it will be.

  • Kudra

    Just wanted to bttt to say thanks for all the suggestions and tips- I gave that lecture this morning!

    Scully, hortensia, jaguarbass, parakeet twitch and Hal9000:

    I really appreciated the suggestions you made and really used a bunch of 'em.

    Eclipse and others- thanks for the well wishes!

    It was powerpoint and I also had a prop and did a demonstration. I tried to get them involved via questions- that was so-so as they are pretty non-participatory group! But they answered a few questions.

    I even got em to laugh once or twice...

    I practiced on friends and fine tuned it really well. I am actually pretty surprised it went as well as it did!

    I had big pit rings of sweat tho! -I guess a yellow shirt is not the best choice... I wore anti persp, too!

    One funny thing- a guy in the first row WINKED at me...!


  • HAL9000

    So glad to hear that it went well.

    Wouldn't tell you before your talk, but during the first talk I gave at a conference the bulb in the overhead projector (remember them??) exploded. Loudly.

    Near crapped myself, but survived....

    It does get easier as you do more though.


  • coffee_black

    Hi Kudra,

    As part of my job, I teach CEU seminars for Architects and Engineers. I have groups of anywhere from 1 to 50. I taught one today.

    The big thing is to relax. Show up a little early and get comfortable in the space. Just be yourself. Use humor whenever possible. The material I teach is technical stuff that would bore a lot of people. I have to be really creative to make it interesting. Involve them in the discussion. Ask questions. Watch their reactions. Be them. Make eye contact. I try to keep it very informal so they feel comfortable. Keep it moving. Put energy into it...move around a bit. Have a good's just a matter of mindset.

    If you like your subject matter, it will show. I usually bring some giveaways...simple things like scales or pens or notepads...(architects never have enough of these) I give them to the ones who answer a tough question or whatever. Sounds silly, but it really works....even with a group of professional men & women.

    Smile at them. They will usually respond in kind...and you will all relax.

    Roll with the punches. At my seminar today, the caterer delivered the lunch to the wrong address. (about 1/2 mile away) There are hundreds of Architectural firms in Boston... they got confused. I was on the phone trying to resolve the least a dozen phone calls and 1 hour later they managed to find the correct address. I had arrived 1 hour early so had enough time to resolve the mess...all the while setting up for the presentation. We started on time. Obviously I was a little flustered...but just made a joke out of the whole thing...and got everyone laughing before we started.

    You can do it. You have to believe you can do it. That is key.

    You'll do great!


  • coffee_black

    Oops...didn't read the whole thread...or look at the date... my bad

    So glad it went well! Congrats!


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