I once spent a whole day in a professional development workshop for second language teachers and I learned how to make a fold-up book. That’s all. Nothing else.
When I’m not stimulated and challenged in a learning context, I tend to get impatient and have to watch my body language, so as not to make my dissatisfaction obvious to the whole room. As an educator, though, there should always be something I can learn. If the content doesn’t engage me, I can learn by observing the presenters…
Throughout the excellent IB Workshop Leader Training, the trainers, consciously and unconsciously, modelled presentation techniques. Trainee workshop leaders were encouraged to stand out front and present in groups. It was inspiring to see such passionate educators find creative, engaging ways to share their knowledge and learning. It was an opportunity to observe, watch, listen… and learn.
Ten tips for
workshop presenters any teachers…
1. Speak in your own voice.
Be genuine and natural. Don’t use a ‘presenter voice’.
2. Don’t speak too much.
As lovely as you might sound, less is more. Keep it simple. Get to the point.
3. Share your passion.
Inspire others with your enthusiasm. If you’re excited by what you’re saying, the audience will be too.
4. Be sensitive to your audience.
Are they yawning? Have they tuned out? Are they checking their email? (Draw your own conclusions!)
5. Listen responsively.
Listen and respond to participants. Show that you value their input.
6. Have a sense of humour.
Laugh at yourself. Laugh with (but not at) your audience.
7. An image speaks a thousand words.
Dump your Powerpoint if it’s overloaded with information. Don’t read from your slides. Use powerful images and as few words as possible as prompts.
8. Provoke the participants.
Make them think. Challenge them. Keep them active.
9. Encourage reflection.
Include thinking time. Allow enough time to talk and construct meaning.
10. Be humble.
You don’t know it all…
IB Workshop Leader Training Day #4