One of the many problems that lecturers, teachers or professors may encounter can be one of keeping the attention of their audience. Much of the time it might be the lesson content, the lecturer themselves, the nature of the subject or even the accompanying training courseware. However, it can also be a combination of all of those factors because as a lecturer you have to add some personality to your lessons and the way you portray the information to your audience.
Suggestions for Adding a Little Fun
Humour is always a good way to engage people on a topic and prevent their boredom levels from rising before you are have way finished. If the subject you are teaching is something a little dull to many people, such as quantum physics, you can always make reference to sci-fi shows or movies to alleviate any possible glazing over of the eyes and head off any yawning. Let’s suppose that you are trying to explain how space-time continuum works. It’s a hard subject to get your head around and it is not easy to explain in layman’s terms. Now, you can either be a straight-laced humourless lecturer, or you can roll your sleeves up and get right in there and act as Doc Brown from Back to the Future. He is the kind of professor that a class could get interactive with.
Interaction is a major part of expressing what you want to say. Get your class involved in the subject and get them fascinated with time-travel and how going back to the future all the time can rip apart the fabric of the universe and destroy the space-time continuum. Make reference to scenes from the movie and if you can, why not have some scenes ready to play so that your point can be emphasized clearly in a fun way? Audience engagement can play a heavy part in the result of your information being passed on and remembered, or the eyes glazing over and you lose your audience within minutes.
If you watch some of the great talkers, including comedians, CEO’s, or even politicians, they know how to engage the people they are addressing and capture their imaginations. They can have their audiences in the palms of their hands within minutes and those are the kinds of people you want to emulate when you are putting across information, especially on a subject that can be seen as ‘boring’ to many.
Don’t wear a brown suit and beige tie, wear a white coat and mess your hair up, or take out some fun props to use during your talk. Having something to refer to will always help to get your audience’s attention and keep it, so long as you are speaking to them in a way that they can relate to. If your material is boring and your voice is dull, it won’t really matter what props you use or what you wear because they will be nodding off within minutes!