Blog Action Day 2012: Monday, October 15


Coming soon, to a blog near you–BLOG ACTION DAY! I’ve participated on several of my blogs over the years, and encouraged my students to register and write as well. This year, I hope you will participate too! It’s easy–the directions follow from an email I received from organizers:
This time next week, thousands of bloggers from around the globe will come together on October 15 to talk about one topic – The Power of We.We would love to see your blog, once again be part of Blog Action Day as an official participant. All you need to do is:

What is the Power of We about?

We thought that the “Power of We” highlighted the many incredible efforts we have witnessed of communities coming together, from local groups to global movements.Your Blog Action Day post might be about a group or movement for change from the past who inspired you, or an issue that you have had personal involvement in, or even tips and suggestions about how groups of people can work together for change.

If you are not sure what to write your blog about, our partners Greenpeace, HelpAge International, Oxfam and Heifer International have provided inspiring content and resources that you can use in your posts, including videos, photos and much more.

We can’t wait to read your Blog Action Day posts on October 15, so make sure you register your blog and take part in one of the unique blogging events of the year.

If you have any questions please contact us via our website or our Twitter and Facebook profiles.

To my Ventura College students, I look forward to seeing your responses!

Getting Your Group Presentations ON!


Active Learning

Making the Grade in Group Presentations

Group presentations are often necessary in the classroom and in the workplace — working as an effective member of a team is a skill that can be essential in work and life. To be successful, all members must work as a team to deliver a consistent and memorable presentation to the audience. In Becoming a Master Student, author Dave Ellis outlines three key strategies that anyone working with a group can follow as a path toward successful group presentations. Read on for your own benefit, share with your students, or both!

1. Get Organized. Once you have your task, appoint a leader and make sure you have all group members’ contact information. Then, compare your calendars and schedule times to work on all stages of your project: planning, researching, writing and practicing. At the first group meeting, create a detailed to-do list of all the tasks involved in successfully completing the presentation. Once you have created this list, distribute the tasks evenly to group members, keeping in mind the strengths of each individual in your group. For example, some members may be great writers, while others may shine on the visually creative side of the project.Next, the group should clearly define the topic and thesis of the presentation and begin to gather and brainstorm quotations, visuals, facts and anecdotes that support the main point of the project. While completing all of these steps it’s important to keep in mind how your project will be evaluated, so you can be sure to meet expectations.
2. Get Coordinated. “Practice makes perfect” is an old adage for a reason, so get the group together and rehearse the presentation! Focus on creating smooth transitions between speakers and keep track of time to ensure that you stay within the time allotted. Additionally, be sure to practice using your visuals, as they are a key component to the success of the overall presentation. To give visuals their full impact, keep in mind the room where you will be presenting when creating them, and be sure that the text is large enough to be seen from anywhere in the room.
3. Get Cooperation. Teamwork and planning are the keys to a successful evaluation of your group presentation. Communicate with all group members in a respectful and open way. Share your ideas, and be responsive to the ideas and suggestions from others. When everyone in your group cooperates, you’re more likely to deliver a successful presentation. (p. 265)

Reference: Content adapted from Ellis, Dave. 2013. Becoming a Master Student, 14th ed. Boston: Wadsworth, Cengage Learning.

These useful ideas are reblogged from Cengage eLearning Newsletter.

I suspect my students will find these tips helpful as they prepare for their group presentations related to their Book Club Books. Each Teaching Collective will create a group blog which will host any of their presentation materials as well as their group’s book review. Read more details on that assignment.