Creative Designs Documentation


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Creative Designs Documentation

  1. 1. IT 6710: Presentation Prowess Ann Younce November 28, 2009 Design Documentation 1. Overview: Context of previous use: The original concept was a webinar on the Web 2.0 tool “Flickr”. It was then transformed for both make-over projects. Perceived problems: Earlier attempts focused more on the use of specific site features; this needs to quickly capture audience interest/imagination and offer enticement to try the tool. Context of current use: Part of a “conference-style” introductory presentation for elementary teachers. This component should continue to create interest & inspire motivation (Reynolds video, 2008). Focus and purpose: This piece represents a change from “how to use Flickr site features” to “how to harness the power of images for effective use in meaningful learning products”. The design is purposefully engaging, authentic & relevant in hopes that the audience will “absorb” the content, providing the necessary curiosity and motivation to “reflect” and “do” more with this tool (Horton, 2006, p.48). 2. Audience: Analysis of learners: The K-5 audience persona was studied to determine interests, needs, and points of resistance (Duarte, 2008, pp.15-16):  Numbers: primary (15); intermediate (15); support staff and specialists (15)  42 female; 3 male faculty  Length of experience: 10% less than 1 year; 20% taught 2-7 years; 40% taught 8-15 years; 30% taught longer than 16 years  More than 60% have Masters degrees; all have elementary certification; and 30% have additional training in upper grades or administrative backgrounds  40% digital natives; 40% skilled digital immigrants; 20% digital immigrants with little/no training  Most are highly knowledgeable in content and best practice; high reading abilities; regular practitioners; practiced at self-directed learning skills  Based on perception data, most are extremely motivated to improve student learning (and to increase their own professional learning and implement effective best practice) through continued, embedded professional development offerings Communication preferences and attitudes: It was determined to appeal to all personality types to provide greater success in reception (Abela, 2008, pp.20-27): In general: - eager (to try Web 2.0 tools) - reluctant (some minds will need to be changed) -“no time for this” (perception that this will be “one more thing”) -new teachers (overwhelmed) -get to the point quickly
  2. 2. -need lots of modifiable ideas By personality dimension: -introvert (time to linger on handout)/extrovert (opportunities for discussion) -sensor (need all details/intuitor (big picture ideas) -thinker (“how does this affect me?”) /feeler (“what’s in it for the students?”) -judger (conclusions & powerful samples)/perceiver (other ways to use tool) -unknown type 3. Learning objectives: Actions will not be changed until the minds of the audience are changed (Abela, 2008, p.31); move learners from a lower level of Bloom’s to higher level skills (after the presentation):  Change “thinking”: (From) “How can a photo be used for valid instruction?”... (To) “how to use photos effectively to motivate and inspire”  Change “doing” actions: (From) incorporating creative use of photos into lesson design… (To) harness the power of images into effective instructional materials and learning products” Learners will be able to…  Approach Flickr in innovative ways  Integrate photos effectively into instructional materials & learning products  Analyze photos for potential benchmarks and strategies  Further explore this web 2.0 tool  Share fun ideas 4. Problem/solution: Problem: teachers want to utilize web 2.0 tools in effective and innovative ways, but don’t have the time or the support/guidance for implementation. They need inspiration, ease of use, benefits, and relevance. Solution: a quick “motivational” presentation, followed later by more in-depth training, will allow learners to see practical uses of tool, and become slowly invested in its integration into their practice. If the teachers receive inspiration following this presentation model they will then be amenable to future presentations, which will begin the step-by-step process of learning and implementing web tools on a larger scale. 5. Evidence: The bulk appears in the form of innovative instructional ideas using Flickr. By viewing these products in multiple ways, the teacher should be able to more quickly identify with the tool and its capabilities – and engage their creativity through focused practice…and the montage will appeal to their visual senses (Duarte, 2008, pp. 255 & 267). By appealing to their needs (practical, age-appropriate example lessons) the audience will make the connection of “what’s in it for them” and this use of the “reality principle” – showing concrete & specific real things – make the presentation interesting and persuasive (Abela, 2008, p.36). 6. Anecdotes: The brief use of central “characters” in the form of fellow educators continues from the earlier presentations, enabling the audience to make additional connections. These current, realistic photos (Reynolds video, 2008) help to create shared
  3. 3. common experiences with the audience, and offer validation for meaningful uses of the tool as well as “fast”, “easy”, and “fun” aspects. 7. Format: I selected the “music video” format because it would enable me to showcase strong images (effective examples of instructional materials and learner products) in a fluid manner along with background music to appeal to the emotions of the audience, and lead them to make connections between the ease of the tool and effective learning products. 8. Sequencing: Revisited the S.C.o.R.E. method (Abela, 2008, p.75) to keep working through each step of “situation”, “complication”, “resolution” and “example” to anticipate what the “next hand raised” at a meeting or training would ask/say…. I knew from earlier formative evaluations that the audience was focused more on the samples showcased, than the actual tool. So I kept that in mind throughout the design process. As for specific content and placement design decisions, I continued to employed the use of realistic, identifiable “characters” for the audience to relate to (Reynolds, 2008, “Brain Rules” slides) –as a connection to other presentation components and representative of the grade levels and demographic of the audience (Duarte, 2008, p.160). I approached the design with repeated glimpses of the end-products to give teachers lots of ideas. The visual element with the sharpest profile tends to claim the viewer’s attention and the use of a crisp montage establishes connections based on conceptual relationships (Vernallis, 2004, pp. 52 & 41). I maintained a “simple, clean, conversational tone” (Reynolds, 2008 video) speaking directly to the audience through the use of vivid, action verbs that related to benchmarks. Additionally, I chose to repeat the sequencing and positioning of titles, arrows, photos, color and characters because as Roam suggests, “if you start with one model, stay with one model” (Roam, 2008, p. 167). These edits appear frequently as I tried to have a rhythmic basis that tied to the visual story (Vernallis, 2004, p.27), supported by “dull” and “fun” background musical excerpts. 9. Graphics: I used specific lesson product images to hold the audience attention- to create associations between the samples and what need to be done in the classroom – within less than a 10-minute attention span window (Medina, 2008, p. 74, 84, 90). I selected visually strong, consistent, aesthetically pleasing images that were large and engaging, and current photos of “teachers” and actual projects….in hopes that the viewers would read emotions into the images and make connections to their own practice with the help of the music (Vernallis, 2004, p. 41). The right images “can represent complex concepts and summarize vast sets of information in ways that are easy for us to see and understand” (Roam, 2008, p. 14) and the use of photos will help teachers to clarify the end products they are looking to create. I made use of angles and floating text (Reynolds, 2008 video), incorporating Flickr text colors. I kept the images and background colors understated to contribute to the montage’s purpose – to engage and persuade and drive action (Abela, 2008, pp.92-3). The music video format encourages the viewer to seek out a narrative through the choreographed images while the song recedes into the background (Vernallis, 2004, pp. 24 & 4), and the collection of captions, and arrows work together to “choreograph” the movement of the eye across the information (Tufte, 2006, p.117).
  4. 4. 10. Text: Typography and contrasts (size, weight, structure, form, direction, color) were considered and I chose a light weight, old style font “Papyrus” for its hand-lettering slant and hint of serif (Williams, 2004, p. 132 & p.143). It reminds me of a teacher writing on the blackboard- white font against black. This background is open, spacious and simple, so as not to compete with the content (Duarte, 2008, p.118) I maintained a balance of textual and graphical content…..not too text heavy yet still able to provide instruction and information… the more concrete detail, the better (Abela, 2008, p. 117-8). Simple lines and minimal text is enhanced by image detail, (Reynolds, 2008, video) which purposefully invites the audience to absorb the text and companion photos to better understand the content and its practical application. I maximized impact by freezing and isolating text across multiple frames among the images, and linked standards, offering a “realistic” quality and contributing to credibility (Duarte, pp. 78-9). The use of this type of repetition builds subtle connections across a string of images and recurring phrases (Vernallis, 2008, p. 188). 11. Layout: The sparse background, delicate crisp text, tilted images accompanied by few words help to convey a Zen-like simplicity, using empty space and purposeful placement (Reynolds, 2008, video). The bright photos “pop” against the empty background, further supporting a sense of space that reinforces it visually and helps to communicate a concise and effective message (Duarte, 2008, pp. 7, 100 & 118). Select photos show the effective use of images - and their enhancements- and are “brought to life” (Abela, 2008, p.114-115) to encourage emulation. Photos are selected for meaning- their connections with benchmarks, and as objects of a music video intended to be continually engrossing (Vernallis, 2008, p. 15). The design principles of “contrast”, “alignment”, “proximity” and “repetition” (Williams, 2004, p. 13) are utilized… the black/white stark contrast; the alignment of angled images balanced evenly on the left/right sides of the frame; the repetition of rhetorical questioning for consistency and visual interest; and the proximity of images/text that appear in the same space (Duarte, 2008, p.7), remaining constant for the eye to predict the patterns amid the movement and transitions of frames. 12. Measurement: (Qualifiers can be added from the earlier objectives): …As measured by:  Increased login to school Flickr account  Engaging use of photos in instruction and lesson product; photo analysis  Replication of sample lesson ideas  Share out of “ah-has” and ideas and sample lessons at follow-up PD day  Requests for modeling/coaching/idea planning/support after presentation Proof of effective solution: -teachers will utilize new strategies & techniques effectively: (Increased engagement & creativity) - Motivation for professional development: (Increased confidence with web 2.0 tools) 13. Peer review results: (Unfortunately, I was unable to participate in the peer review process. The following represents the potential questions I would have used and my own various attempts at follow-up responses and revisions; along with a few comments from an original partner in that first Flickr webinar assignment one year ago):
  5. 5. 1. Story – I tried to entice teachers into making a change from the "same-old" use of photos into trying the enhancements Flickr offers... is that evident? Ann- I think it’s only evident to me because I have the first two makeovers in my head and I know what the original Flickr presentation looked like….I’m not sure if the old-to-new translates well enough… Lynne- Wow! What a change from our original presentation – and a change for the better at that!! It is a dramatic way to focus on the features of Flickr without getting bogged down in all the site usage details. The images of lessons are appealing and stand out as the best examples of Flickr features. 2. Clarity - the photo and caption quality may be compromised in some shots (due to bringing screenshots of the ppt slides into Camtasia and MovieMaker for a layering effect that the editing software won't do... Are they too blurry? In normal Screencast view they seem fine, but when the video window is enlarged.... :( I’m out of ideas on this one… I tried re-formatting photos, resizing, working in only one editing tool then the other… I had no good way of replicating the slide other than to make a screenshot of it. I t seems that the blue text is the fuzziest of all (I chose to create captions on frames instead of bringing in screenshots whenever I could). 3. Editing - I had to go back and forth from MovieMaker to Camtasia in order to make use of the editing features that the one or the other didn't have.... I couldn't find a tool (either free or one that I own) that would do all the advanced features that I had in my head.... does it still have the look/feel of student work? Ann- I did my best with the tools available to me Lynne- I believe the video editing looks fine. It flows nicely and I don’t notice any rough jerks or stops. It looks really good. 4. Music - did I transition successfully from the "old/boring" section into more "fun"? Is the fun song too repetitive? I tried to transition from one song to the other. I matched the instrument types and general cadences, and I’m confident that they blend seamlessly. 5. Are there enough "fun" elements? (i.e. bright Flickr colors, happy fonts, quirky music, variation of movement, humor, and unique uses)? Lynne- I think you successfully captured many of the same ‘fun’ elements that we were aiming for in our webinar. The music provides an upbeat tempo and each new lesson photo keeps the viewer’s attention focused on what will come next. I like how you used the pinks and blues of the Flickr site colors for continuity! References: Abela, A. (2008). Advanced Presentation by Design - Creating Communication That Drives Action. Duarte, N. (2008). Slide:ology – The Art and Science of Creating Great Presentations. Horton, W. (2006). E-Learning by Design. Medina, J. (2008). Brain Rules. Retrieved from, October, 2009. Reynolds, G. (2007). “Brain Rules for Presenters” slideshow. Retrieved from, September, 2009.
  6. 6. Reynolds, G. (2009). “Presentation Zen” slideshow. Retrieved from, September, 2009. Roam, D. (2008) The Back of the Napkin: Solving Problems and Selling Ideas with Pictures. Retrieved from, October, 2009. Tufte, E. R. (2006). Beautiful Evidence. Retrieved from, October, 2009. Vernallis, C. (2004). Experiencing Music Video – Aesthetics and Cultural Context. Retrieved from, November, 2009. Williams, R. (2004). The Non-Designer’s Design Book. **Image attribution: some original photos taken myself; most found in Flickr (Creative Commons) or Google images and were modified by me, creating something unique…Modified background musical excerpts from and Appendix: Worksheet A.1a. Audience Personality Type Audience Personality Type Elementary teachers: ** everyone in the list at left will exhibit something from this list below: -detail-oriented -eager (to try Web 2.0 tools) -big picture -get to the point quickly -how does this affect me? - reluctant (minds will need to be changed) -introvert/extrovert *appeal to both sides -sensor/intuitor -thinker/feeler -“no time for this” (same as above) -judger/perceiver -unknown type -new teachers (overwhelmed)
  7. 7. Worksheet A.1b. Audience Personality Implications Presentation Implications Provide all or part of presentation in advance Plan for lots of discussion and Q&A Make sure to include all relevant facts and detains in handout Provide overview up-front (to answer “what’s in it for me?”) Identify principles, costs, and benefits State implications for each person or group of stakeholders involved List all alternatives considered Worksheet A.2. From-To Think-Do Matrix FROM TO THINK How can a photo sharing site be used for valid instruction? How can they be inspired to try the tool? These are some great tools and effective strategies; Flickr can be used for effective instruction DO Using a variety of individual photo applications (if any at all) for storage; Using photos in predictable ways for instruction; incorporating basic images into lessons Begin to experiment with Flickr and use the tool/ share innovative ideas Worksheet A.3. Audience Problem The problem that my audience has is: teachers want to utilize web 2.0 tools in effective and innovative ways, but don’t have the time or the support/guidance for implementation - they need it “fast”; they need it to be easy to do; they need to know how it will help them; they need to know if it’s relevant for kids
  8. 8. Worksheet A.4 Audience Problem Recognize problem > no time to learn new web 2.0 tools and integrate Define Problem > need “fast” & “easy” instruction; need to know relevance & effective use Define solution > “motivating” presentation; invite curiosity and impetus to try tool Solve part of the problem > create interest and motivate through presentation Solve the whole problem > TBD….create future presentation for specific training of tool & its features (teachers that developed previous interest will want to take part in future training) Worksheet A.5. Solution Evaluation Evaluation Criteria: Option 1 Learn new web 2.0 tools/strategies to enrich instruction [Proposed Solution] Option 2 Do nothing [Alternative 1] Option 3 Keep trying independently using existing random tools [Alternative 2] Option 4 Learn on their own [Alternative 3] Utilize new strategies & techniques effectively Increased engagement in lesson - May or may not produce innovative/effective instruction ? Motivation for professional development Increased confidence with web 2.0 tools - Frustration likely ? Worksheet A.6. List of Evidence 1. “Flickr” as an innovative instructional tool 2. What’s In It For Me? 3. Site overview 4. New users 5. Basic features 6. Additional features & fun
  9. 9. 7. Instructional ideas 8. Classroom examples/models by content area 9. Testimonials from educators Worksheet A.7. Stakeholder Analysis Whose help will we need for our recommendations to be implemented? Administration Lead teachers Site Instructional Technology Liaison (me) What must each of them think or do for our recommendations to be successful? Be supportive and positive Learn along with their team Support & guide with patience Where do they stand on this? Supportive supportive supportive What do we need to do to close the gap? - Provide time and support Provide time and support
  10. 10. IT 6710: Design Lessons Learned Ann Younce December 6, 2009 Design Documentation 1. Overview: Those design lessons that perhaps made the strongest impression on me throughout this whole term were that of the “Presentation Zen” model offered by Garr Reynolds. It really opened my eyes to a different type of presentation style and I quickly gravitated toward its principles. It truly changed how I view (and compile) presentations, and I wanted to use one or several of these design lessons within my art piece. Ultimately, I had to abandon my initial “sketch” of a nature scene in the fall that had its focus on trees that had all but lost their leaves. I just wasn’t able to recreate the picture I had in my head: stark, bare tree branches against the crisp sky with a solitary leaf hanging on just long enough to impart some Zen design wisdom… No matter how many different ways I tried to edit and layer, I just couldn’t achieve the exact effect I wanted. So, as I thought more about the reasons I was drawn to the various “Presentation Zen” references to the aesthetic concepts of simplicity… naturalness... clarity… and uncluttered space, I realized that a new picture was beginning to form in my head and I set out to recreate it instead. My design lesson learned comes from Garr Reynolds in a video for the series Authors @Google where he tells the audience that “design is soul deep” (Reynolds, 2008, video). He compared “design” to a birthday cake that was full of frosting and decoration on the outside – which was fine at first glance, but the true quality of the cake could be found on the inside. I decided to join this concept “Design is soul deep” with a single principle of the Zen aesthetic “Simplicity” to offer a companion series of my design lessons learned: 2. Personal Relevance: Lesson Selection: The relevance of the Zen aesthetic for me personally is that it always seems to appear peaceful and tranquil – things very far from my hectic day-to-day
  11. 11. existence. The design lesson, “Design is soul deep”, speaks to Garr’s philosophy that the true message comes from the essence of our thought… and the effort to take what’s on the inside and try to communicate that honest message to the audience (Reynolds, 2008, video). Significance: The significance of this design to me is that so often my attempts at communication are too verbose, or there always are too many photos or distractions on a page. The act of stripping something down to a single image … to achieve simplicity of message through the subtraction of everything else and letting go to create openness is something that really appealed to me. (Reynolds, 2008, video). 3. Design Decisions: Goal: I wanted to use items that represented the Zen aesthetic… the use of natural elements such as water and stone. The items would need to be simple and pure, and would need to look like they visually belong together. Important elements: Each of the elements I chose has a specific contribution to the overall message. The role that the water plays is to communicate a sense of depth, as well as provide a natural, uncluttered backdrop. The role of the stones represents a pathway in the first photo - virtual stepping stones that lead the viewer along the path of the particular message. In the second photo, the stone represents the change agent – the act of simplicity in design can change one’s style and change the viewer’s response. Finally, the role of the ripple is to signify that once a Zen design principle like “simplicity” is employed, the design style catches on and spreads… which might bring about the eventual end of the “death by PowerPoint” syndrome. The best design elements exist in nature and achieve balance through harmony, while the “whitespace” gives the viewer some breathing room (Duarte, 2008, pp.10; 92; 110). Materials: Format/Graphics: I selected existing monotone photos of water, ripples, stones, and a pathway and layered them together with the addition of simple text. I couldn’t create the same effect in real life, so I edited them together and tried to achieve a large picture that both attracts the eye and could be memorable at the same time (Abela, 2008, p. 95) Text: Typography and contrasts (size, weight, structure, form, direction, color) were considered as I chose a light weight, old style font “Papyrus” for its simple, hand-lettering slant and hint of serif (Williams, 2004, p. 132 & p.143). Using white font against black stone, the simple lines and minimal text enhance the image detail (Reynolds, 2008, video) Layout: The sparse background and delicate crisp text of few words help to convey a Zen- like simplicity, and add to the empty space of the water and purposeful placement of the stones (Reynolds, 2008, video). The horizon line an the endless motion of ripples further support a sense of space that reinforces the photos visually and helps to communicate a concise and effective message (Duarte, 2008, pp. 7, 100 & 118). The design principles of “contrast”, “alignment”, “proximity” and “repetition” (Williams, 2004, p. 13) are utilized and the flow of both water and message is intentional, with stones leading in one clear direction that moves toward the message (Duarte, 2008, p.97).
  12. 12. References (Many authors that influenced my overall design style in some way are listed below): Abela, A. (2008). Advanced Presentation by Design - Creating Communication That Drives Action. Duarte, N. (2008). Slide:ology – The Art and Science of Creating Great Presentations. Horton, W. (2006). E-Learning by Design. Medina, J. (2008). Brain Rules. Retrieved from, October, 2009. Reynolds, Garr; (2008) “Authors @ Google: Garr Reynolds” video. Retrieved from IT 6710 Reynolds, G. (2007). “Brain Rules for Presenters” slideshow. Retrieved from, September, 2009. Reynolds, G. (2009). “Presentation Zen” slideshow. Retrieved from, September, 2009. Reynolds, Garr; “Sample Slides- Before/After” slideshow (2007) retrieved from IT 6710 Roam, D. (2008) The Back of the Napkin: Solving Problems and Selling Ideas with Pictures. Retrieved from, October, 2009. Tufte, E. R. (2006). Beautiful Evidence. Retrieved from, October, 2009. Vernallis, C. (2004). Experiencing Music Video – Aesthetics and Cultural Context. Retrieved from, November, 2009. Williams, R. (2004). The Non-Designer’s Design Book. **Image attribution: Photo of ripples found in Google images and the stone path photo was found at All photos were modified by me, creating something unique…