Talk of the Day: Ron Gutman wants you to smile

Once again, it’s TED Talk Presentation time in class. I admit that when this was a written assignment, I didn’t pay too much mind to it, at least in terms of how much attention I devoted to analyzing the students’ chosen talks myself. But, now that this is a presentation (duh!), I have to remain as engaged as my students are. Being an audience member when one is the teacher is a special responsibility. I am a cheerleader first and foremost. Even if the student is struggling, I am right there cheering that student on, nodding my head “yeaaaaahhh!”, commenting and applauding, and asking questions. Well, in this case, I can’t really ask questions if I haven’t seen the talk myself; nor can I really gauge what the level of the student’s engagement with the ideas and concepts is without watching the talk. So, this is what I do every second Sunday or Monday of the month, watch 15 TED talks (and make some very special treats for class tomorrow to honor a belated birthday). I started with Ron Gutman’s “The hidden power of smiling”. This is probably one of the only Prezi presentations I’ve seen that works without that at times characteristic visual vertigo that comes with Prezi’s zooming approach. Check it out–a smile can actually save your life.

To Alex Rister, can we please start showing that little bit in there about mirror neurons during delivery?

Thanks to Xavier Watkins for choosing this talk!

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