What makes a Pecha Kucha great? I’ve seen so many Pecha Kucha’s lately, that I think I have a clue. Here goes:
First of all, enthusiasm. There is something incredibly infectious, in a positive sense (if infections can be thought of positively). When the presenter is having a great time, enjoying the presentation, it carries over to the audience, almost by osmosis. Put another way – you are having an enjoyable moment, and I’ll enjoy it with you.
Secondly, great imaginative slides, used creatively, in a surprising way. Let’s take Mark Andrews, for example. All of us know the history of ELT. It’s a topic that rarely gets a positive nod for inclusion at a conference nowadays. I mean, if you want to ensure that your conference proposal gets rejected, submit a proposal for a talk on the History of ELT. Yet here Mark adds a new twist to the retelling of our ELT roots – he connects it to bridges.
So, what does bridges got to do with ELT? Have you ever seen a bridge teach an English class before? What methodology would a bridge use? Grammar-Translation? Audio-Lingual? Communicative? Lexical? Corpus-based? You get my point. This idea, bridges and ELT, arouses our curiosity, our interest, and we know, we gotta go, we gotta be there, because to miss it is unthinkable.
Again, creativity is a must. But what else? Yes, let me add the obvious. A great Pecha Kucha is not something that just, “happens”. It’s not magic. Behind the smooth, polished, graceful, elegant, inspiring, enthralling presentation, there lies a lot of hard work. Preparation, practice, ordering, re-ordering slides, working out what the words will be, where spontaneity will be allowed, where smoothness will be planned, the use of the voice, the audience interaction, etc. etc. etc.
Here’s my point: The great presentations are no accident.
To finish, here’s the latest addition to the Great Pecha Kucha’s: Mark Andrews’s – Bridges and ELT, given at HUPE 2011 in Opatija. Enjoy…