Introduction and My Experience
During this week, I made a presentation to introduce iconography (poses and mudras) for one of my Buddhism classes. The presentation gives information necessary for the students to complete a worksheet and serves as a jumping-off point for a research project on Buddhist Iconography. Converting my original powerpoint to prezi left some formatting errors, but prezi was overall intuitive and easy to use. It’s great for presenting pictures, as in this presentation, but prezi can also easily add video and YouTube files (which was not applicable to me in this instance).
Access the presentation here:
In my educational setting, I am required to lecture in 3.5 hour classes at the university level. Using presentations instead of just talking at the students is necessary when teaching English language learners (ELL), as they can exercise not only their listening skills, but increase understanding through visual representations. Instead of choosing between presentations and more interactive learning, I try to utilize both in each lesson. I usually break the class up into two, one hour and forty-minute sections where the presentation lecture is followed by activities which allow learners to put the information into practice.
The best type of information to include in presentations is theory; abstract concepts can be viewed with supplementary material, such as video, audio, and various other visual representations. Nonlinguistic representations include graphic organizers, physical models, generating mental pictures, pictures, illustrations, pictographs and engaging in kinesthetic activities (Parker-Moore, n.d.). These can be embedded into the actual presentation or supplementary resources that are available for a more extensive time frame (leaving up a poster throughout a particular unit). Students can then use the examples to guide them during their activities.
Observations and Conclusions
Personally, I have found that humor works best to hold Thai students’ attention; the general rule holds true that if a Thai student is not having fun, they are not engaged in the lesson. Funny pictures/comics, short videos and music videos can be used to re-engage interest in a subject and to re-focus the lesson. I also use humor while presenting the information and I’ll say a translation in Thai with a funny accent to quiet a room if it is getting unruly. I use YouTube frequently, as well as SlideShare.net as both allow me easy access to resources which I can use as templates and edit to suit the needs of my lessons. I want to continue to explore Prezi, as it takes some time to get to know how to use, as well as PowToon in creating my lecture presentations.
Parker-Moore, J. (n.d.). Nonlinguistic Representations. Retrieved from