“Practice does not make perfect. Only perfect practice makes perfect.” Vince Lombardi
Like many of you, I’ve had a steep learning curve regarding virtual tools. I keep hoping that I’ll get over the hump, but recent experience proves that I’m still climbing.
Recently, I was introduced to Mentimeter and Jamboard. I practiced moving from my PowerPoint slides to share Mentimeter or Jamboard. Each time, something went wrong. I forgot to have the sites keyed up so I could select them. I couldn’t find the right sites when I selected them. I had trouble seeing the green border that indicated the right screen. I lost my PowerPoint slides.
I practiced for hours and still couldn’t use the tools consistently or well. As one example out of many, it never once occurred to me that I had to select “share” so that the participants would be able to see the nifty word cloud created by their Mentimeter responses.
As a result, all that everyone saw was a blank screen where their thoughts and commitments were supposed to be. And I had no idea why- or how to fix it until days after the session was over.
I had wanted to impress a new client with my content knowledge and virtual skills, and I completely tripped over the technology. I really dropped the ball. Sigh.
The moral of my sad tale: Practice makes perfect only if you’re practicing the right things and are consistently getting better. Unfortunately, I didn’t, and I wasn’t.
What did I learn from this virtual nightmare?
- Read all the directions for the virtual tool.
- Watch videos to see how to use the tool.
- Take notes about what to have ready before a session and what to do during a session.
- Practice with friends and family who can report what they’re seeing, or not seeing, on the screen.
- Have the links handy and make sure to put them into chat.
- Have the relevant sites pulled up on my desktop.
- Know whether to select share screen or share new screen.
- Learn how to minimize PowerPoint so it’s easier to see the other sites to make a smooth transition.
- Remember to share results!!
- Stay calm. People are very forgiving.
Question: What helps you to master new digital tools? I can use all the tips I can get!!
May your learning be sweet- and safe.