In a recent PowerPoint presentation that I used in the classroom, I embedded hyperlinks to almost every page, to make it more like a mini webquest for the students. I added sound for the first time - a large 'BOOM' at the beginning (the unit is on earthquakes), to 'wake' the students up - and it worked - they were hooked.
One of the students' assessment pieces for this unit is to create their own PowerPoint on a natural disaster of their choice. Since they were not too familiar with PowerPoint, I modeled one for them, using animation entrances and exits as well. This allowed for their "learning to take place in an authentic context" (Kearsley & Shneiderman, 1999, p.1), which deepened their knowledge on the subject.
One of the other students enrolled in this course gave me the wonderful idea of allowing the students to work through PowerPoint by themselves, with a small amount of instruction from the learning manager. I had never thought to use this application in this way, and I can't wait to try it out on my students.
I have also just inserted a windows movie maker file into a PowerPoint for the first time, which I am extremely proud of and happy with the result. I feel that PowerPoint is an excellent tool for students to view as a delivery method, and to learn and create for their assignments. Its versatility and simplicity makes it an easy choice for me.
Kearsley, G. & Shneiderman, B. (1999). Engagement Theory: A framework for technology-based teaching and learning. Retrieved July 17, 2009, fromhttp://home.sprynet.com/~gkearsley/engage.htm