Teaching grammar: Prezi vs. PowerPoint.

Source photo: http://301198.blogspot.nl/2014/11/diferencias-entre-power-point-y-prezi.html .

When putting together a inductive or deductive grammar lesson, you can choose to use tools like PowerPoint or Prezi. In this blog post I’ll share my opinion about and experiences with both of these tools. Additionally, I’ll go into which tool I believe works best for explaining and presenting grammar.

I used Prezi and PowerPoint during my school placement last year. Each tool has its benefits, however, the tools do have some of pitfalls as well. Compared to PowerPoint, Prezi is quite a new tool. When using PowerPoint, we make use of the ‘traditional’ slides whereas Prezi allows the user to create a presentation on big blank page.

I’ve used (and still use) Prezi quite a lot. However, I find the tool to be a disaster when it comes to teaching (explaining and presenting) grammar. My main problem with Prezi is that a Prezi often contains multiple ‘paths’ and thus ‘point’. When skipping back and forth between those ‘points’, you may find yourself at a wrong point and get completely lost in the Prezi’s labyrinth. In this case, the unique zoom function Prezi offers, is both an advantage and a disadvantage.

A similar experience happened to me when I was explaining the present simple in class last year . And, as to be expected, a lot of students got really confused. I ended up explaining the grammar on a ‘normal’ (traditional) board. So, when teaching grammar it’s important to be clear. Mistakes should be anticipated and avoided since a lot of student find English grammar extremely difficult and hard to understand. When technology is failing you (OR you’re failing technology), your students are likely to notice and get (even more) confused. Moreover, you want to prevent your students from taking inaccurate notes.

And then there’s PowerPoint; I’ve used PowerPoint a couple of times as well. And although I’m not very keen on this tool normally, I find it to be a great tool when it comes to teaching grammar. PowerPoint allows you to explain the grammar in a step-by-step manner; skipping back and forth is no problem at all. It’s great for inductive grammar teaching as well; you can add clips, texts and exercises without actually creating a ‘labyrinth’. However, there’s the pitfall of actually having to save the PowerPoint onto your laptop/computer/tablet and the often large file size you get for free.

Afbeeldingsresultaat voor large file size

Source photo: https://syncplicity.zendesk.com/hc/en-us/articles/204536600-Attaching-large-files .

All in all, I think it’s pretty clear that I favour PowerPoint over Prezi for explaining and presenting grammar. PowerPoint is very simple to use! Additionally, I like the traditional no-nonsense slides better. However, I’m open to experimenting with Prezi again sometime in the near future as I do like using Prezi as a tool for teaching literature.





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