'2012 Green Heart Schools public speaking competition' photo (c) 2012, Brisbane City Council - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/


Begin with: The Importance Of Telling Stories When Teaching Or Presenting

Helping our students learn how to deliver good presentations, and helping ourselves practice what we preach, is always a challenging exercise (at least, it is for me). I thought it might be useful to create a “The Best…” list with the resources that I’ve found useful for doing both.

You might also be interested in The Best Resources For Teaching Students The Differences Between A Good & Bad Slide.

Here are my picks for The Best Sources Of Advice For Making Good Presentations:

10 Powerpoint Tips for Preparing a Professional Presentation

Ten Tips For Students In Making A Good Presentation by Dr. Delaney Kirk (Thanks to Angela Maiers for the tip)

5 Ways to Ruin Your Next Presentation (thanks to Doug Peterson for the tip)

The 10/20/30 Rule of PowerPoint

The TED Commandments – rules every speaker needs to know

Tom Peters On Presentations

From design to meaning: a whole new way of presenting?

Top Ten Delivery Tips from Garr Reynolds

Make Better Presentations – The Anatomy of a Good Speech

Really Bad PowerPoint by Seth Godin

Brain Rules For Presenters (thanks to EdTech Update for the tip)

The 10 Worst Presentation Habits

This is a very interesting post about the Glance Test:

“…slides should be processed in 3 seconds or less. It’s impossible for people to process your slides and your words simultaneously. The test gives you a quantifiable way to test a slide’s viability as a glance medium by calculating a signal-to-noise ratio for individual slides.”

This can be a very useful tool for both teachers and students to keep in mind when developing any kind of presentation slides.

How To Give A Lousy Presentation is the title of a short and simple Business Week article.

The Problem With PowerPoint is an excellent article from the BBC.

The Presentation Secrets of Steve Jobs is a very helpful slideshow by the author of the book with the same name. I was surprised by how much I learned from it.

Check-out what the Dilbert comic strip has to say about PowerPoint.

Public Speaking – How I Prepare Every Time

13 Best Practice Tips for Effective Presentation Handouts shares some excellent ideas.

The Duarte blog has a great post about the presentation of a fifteenth century Italian architect. It’s titled Great Moments in Presentation History: The Architect and the Egg.

Its focus is what they call S.T.A.R. Moments ™. This is how they define it:

S.T.A.R. stands for “Something They’ll Always Remember” and S.T.A.R. Moments refer to the memorable moments in a presentation that stick in the minds of your audience long after the presentation is over.

They have another post titled Of S.T.A.R.s and Mosquitoes that talks about these moments at TED Talks, including when Bill Gates let some mosquitoes loose on the crowd.

It’s a good idea to keep in mind when planning a presentation — what is that one defining moment to want to happen?

Dodging Bullets In Presentations is a useful slideshow to review.

Check-out the winners of Slideshare’s 2009 World’s Best Presentation Contest.

The World’s Worst PowerPoint Presentations comes from PC World Magazine (Thanks to Interesting Pile for the tip)

PowerPoint Hell: Don’t Let This Happen to Your Next Presentation also comes from PC World.

How to avoid creating a snooze-worthy PowerPoint presentation is a post from “10,000 Words.”

Story Power in Presentations is a very good post on the importance of using stories in presentations. In fact, it provides “biometric evidence” demonstrating its effectiveness.

I have numerous examples of bad and good PowerPoint presentations on this list. This one may “take the cake,” though. Check-out If Only Martin Luther King Had Modern Software and Jargon: the Powerpoint Version of “I Have a Dream” (PPT). Then watch his actual speech. I show this contrast to my International Baccalaureate Theory Of Knowledge class as they prepare for their Oral Presentations.

Here’s a video from the organizer of Ignite presentations (somewhat similar to TED Talks) giving advice on how to present at those conferences. It, too, provides good advice on giving public presentations. Anecdote shares some additional advice related to the video.

“What makes a great scientific talk?” is an excellent post by David Winter. His advice, though, is excellent for any kind of presentation — not just one related to science.

“Clean Up Your Mess: A Guide To Visual Design For Everyone” provides the most accessible advice I’ve see on visual design — whether it be for websites, ads, slides, etc.

The Secrets of Storytelling: Why We Love a Good Yarn

8 Simple Storytelling Tips For Business Owners

Check-out the Worst PPT Slide Contest Winners and read design advice from the contest organizers.

Here are a few short videos on making good PowerPoint presentations:

Visual Bee is a plug-in for creating PowerPoint presentations. It seems to automatically make them snazzier. In some ways it reminds me of how changing themes in this blog works — you type in the basic info, and then you can try out how it looks in a zillion different themes and then choose one. Thanks to Vicki Davis for the tip.

5 things audiences hate about presentations is a useful Slideshare presentation. Thanks to Donna Baumbach for the tip.

Five Tips for Creating PowerPoint Slides that WON’T Bore Your Audience is from Bill Ferriter.

How To Open a Speech or Presentation offers some helpful hints.

Cartoon: PowerPoint Fever is from The New Yorker via This Week in Education.

How to Present like Steve Jobs is from Kiss Metrics.

The Secret to Dynamic Presentations is from Leadership Freak.

What I’m Looking For at ISTE 2012 is from Engaging Educators and offers good advice for presenting at any conference.

How to Get — and Keep — Someone’s Attention is from Annie Murphy Paul.

The Grim Reaper Understands How To Design A Good PowerPoint Slide

5 great ways to end a speech is from Ragan’s PR Daily.

Five Killer Tips for a Confident Presentation is from The Glass Hammer.

How To Give A Great Speech is from Forbes.

Nancy Duarte has an excellent series in the Harvard Business Review about making good presentations. Links to each one of the other short articles can be found at the bottom of the one I link to….

Tips For Making Presentations Better is an accessible video from English Central.

Secrets From a TED2013 Speaker: Preparing for the “Talk of One’s Life” has helpful advice for any presentation.

This inaugural quote is from Marta Kagan in 7 Lessons From the World’s Most Captivating Presenters. I’m adding this info to The Best Sources Of Advice For Making Good Presentations:

Speaking activity: Presentation skills is a nice interactive from The BBC.


Don’t Be Boring: A Surefire Approach to Engaging Your Audience — Part 1 is by Nancy Duarte.

The British Councils offers some good student presentation tips.

A 9 Step Cheatsheet for Becoming a Public Speaking Expert

Quote Of The Day: The Importance Of Storytelling

It’s Time for PechaKucha: Do it with Style

A TED speaker coach shares 11 tips for right before you go on stage is from TED Talks.

Free e-book: How to Present at a Language Teacher’s Conference is from Adam Simpson.

10 PowerPoint Tips for Teachers is from Tekhnologic.

Why Your Students Forgot Everything On Your PowerPoint Slides is from Larry Cuban’s blog.

The complete guide to absolutely nailing your next big presentation is from Quartz.

Everything You Need to Assign and Teach Ignite Presentations is from Todd Finley.

Simple & Effective Speaking Rubric For Class Presentations


Why Your Students Forgot Everything On Your PowerPoint Slides is from EdSurge.

Good Advice On Making Presentations

There’s a movement for better posters at science conferences. is an interesting article about a new format for scientific “posters.” It seems to me it could be worth using the format in class and reinforce the idea that students are working as scientists. Here’s the format:



Not Sure If You’ll Find A Better Guide For Making Good Presentations Than This One…


Tips on Persuading People From the Head of TED Talks is from Slate.

How a Simple Presentation Framework Helps Students Learn is from Edutopia.

Suggestions and feedback, as always, are welcome.

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