I'm sure all of you have been subject to a 'Death by PowerPoint' presentation at some point in your education or careers. PowerPoint is an extremely powerful product in itself but often the way that we are taught (or teach ourselves) to use it limits us to doing much the same 'info dump' each time we make one. As an educator myself I'm always looking for new ways to make my lessons more interesting.
Perhaps Prezi is the answer. Prezi is a Web2.0 application built on HTML5. It's an interactive presentation tool with a twist, literally! Here are my tips on using this tool to its greatest potential
1. Prezi has no separate slides - Your text and images are all pasted onto one large canvas. The canvas itself is unfeasibly large and you can make images as small or as large as you like as well as rotating images and texts. Fill the canvas with as much as you need (or even more) for your presentation.
2. Use Prezi like a mind map - Every normal presentation tends to be unique for its purpose. In my own world I would make separate files for teaching about the eye, the lungs and the heart. But with Prezi I can include all of this information on one canvas and just plot my route around to suit my topic or my audience. In this way you can point out the links between separate ideas and your audience can make new connections. This is learning at its most potent for sure.
3. Add motion to your presentation - You can plot the path around your canvas to suit the content that you wish to show for a particular audience. If you need to add or omit something without deleting it then just change the path without toying with the canvas overall. No more ordering of slides. One drawback seems to be that you can't hide content and then reveal it as you move around your path.
4. Zoom in and out - Set your path to zoom in and out of elements of your canvas. For instance, the human body presentation could swoop in to show detail on individual elements like a detailed diagram of the heart and back out again to show how it fits in with the circulatory system. The path will also rotate automatically to show text the right way up for added visual effect.
5. Embed video easily - Videos from YouTube can be automatically embedded and set to play automatically within your path adding an extra layer of multimedia functionality to your presentation.
6. Don't give the audience motion sickness - Of course all this motion can get a little disorienting for your audience. Use motion to enhance your presentation, not just for the sake of the effect. Nobody wants to leave your presentation feeling nauseous!
These tips should help you on your way to making fantastic 'Prezi' presentations. Experiment with different techniques, I'd love to hear how you get on.