About 20 DCNTP mentors polished their presenting skills with the workshop “Designing and Presenting Professional Development for Beginning Teachers” on March 11 and 12, presented at the Wisconsin Center for Music Education in Waunakee.
Tom Howe of the DCNTP and Marc Heuer of McFarland facilitated, but before they could get to work teaching the finer points of presenting, had to improvise because the doors to the facility were locked. Amid many phone calls to site staff and introductory conversations among participants, they pointed out that dealing with the unexpected was part of the job.
Like all NTC workshops, the curriculum modeled what participants are asked to incorporate in their own teaching. People moved from corner to corner during one exercise, changing positions as the labels on the corners were changed. Adult learners appreciate the chance to move.
One the second day of the workshop, each person presented for five to seven minutes on one segment of a larger presentation, either imagined for this exercise or for future job responsibilities. Everyone used at least one hand-drawn visual.
Presenters had two minutes to brief their group on the context of their presentation.
Elements of excellent professional development presentation include a well-planned opening, well-designed visuals, building community, linking concepts and content, being human, and providing clear direction.
Each audience member filled out a form for written feedback, and debriefed orally with the presenter for three minutes.