Using PowerPoints

Media Type: Teaching Ideas

You know the feeling. The presenter is introduced, everyone applauds, and then they launch PowerPoint and before long they are reading the slides. Ugh. This is all too common and easily avoidable -- especially if you put a little thought into what you want to say and how you want to say it.

If you use PowerPoint you know that publishers provide slides for you to use in class. That is fine -- it is a good start -- but unless you personalize the slides with pictures and examples you’ll find yourself churning through the slides too fast. This is a huge mistake since you are not giving your students enough time to process the information.

I recommend that you use the publisher slides when they convey hard to illustrate ideas with nice visuals or cool graphics and take the slides with the definitions and lists and use the overhead/document camera/chalkboard to write out the rest of the information. The same principle applies to the graphs and problem solving we use in economics -- it really is better for you to do this live.

There is one nice advantage of using PowerPoint. If you redact some of the information on the slides you can post them as a note taking outline and students will bring them to class and fill in the missing pieces. The redacted notes help to focus attention on the slides you are presenting in class.

I’ve made my favorite powerpoint presentations available to you via Slideshare in our media Library - browse my Econ PowerPoint Slides now and download them to make them your own!

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