Looks like my slidecast debut will have to wait. I recorded narration for a slideshow I did a while ago on Thomas a Becket, but for some reason Slideshare can’t retrieve the MP3 from my hosting service. I’ve got an email in to Slideshare support; I’m hoping for a quick response, as I’d really like to get this up and posted.
I can offer the following reflection – the slide show I’ll be putting up usually takes me anywhere between 3o-40 minutes to go through in class. I know that sounds like a long time, but that includes taking questions, asking questions, elaborating, etc. Still probably on the long side, though, as I never script these things, and just run from either my head or a list of bulletpointed notes.
After the first 1500 or so takes of my narration, I got tired of stumbling, bumbling, saying “ummm”, and all those other wonderful aspects of public speaking (I’m fine in front of an audience, just don’t get me in front of a mic), and wrote a quick script. Nothing fancy, just basically what I wanted to get across, in an informal, conversational tone. The total running time of the MP3 (pre-Slideshare syncing)?
Again, this is without stopping for questions, repeating myself for those who didn’t hear, or anything like that, but holy cow – the demands and restrictions put on me by the audio recording forced me to trim this down to at least a quarter of its normal presentation time. I was planning on turning some of my lectures this year into podcasts, but was still a bit hung up on recording a 25-40 minute lecture. I wonder how short I can get THOSE with a little tightening of the script?
In class, I try to deliver material as seemingly “off the cuff” as possible – I know my stuff, and I don’t need or want to read from a script. I think that engages my kids; however, what comes off as stiff in person actually sounds much smoother in recording, and if I do make the leap to podcasts this year, I’ll do so without the trepidation of overly lengthy downloads – with the right script, I’ll probably be able to cover an entire movement in 10-15 minutes. Think about how much class time that’ll free up.
Before I rack out for the night (it’s been a long weekend), I want to give a heartfelt thank you to the folks who’ve visited and left comments so far. As I said before, I really am excited about the communal, collaborative element of blogging, and I’m heartened to know that what I’m putting out there is being seen. Looking forward to continuing the dialogue with all of you, both here and at your places! I have some thoughts on Twitter I’ll be fleshing out here later this week, as well as getting my slidecast up (hopefully).