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Prezi-How it Works For Educators and For Education

We have ALL been there...another boring presentation from Powerpoint quickly lulling us into the zoned oblivion of peaceful slumber... 
 
 This kind of presentation has become so commonplace, but now there is another option.  Prezi is simmilar to  Powerpoint in the sense that you can present information graphically, but it takes a different approach to make the presentation more exciting.  It allows viewers to see the entire picture and then delve into the details as the presenter transmits information. It is easy to sign up and after a bit of playing is quite user friendly.  These are a few tips on getting started and what Prezi is all about...
 
First a simple video that helps to visualize the idea...

About Prezi:  

Prezi is a cloud-based presentation media source software that opens up a new world between whiteboards and slides. The zoomable canvas makes it fun to explore ideas and the connections between them. The result: visually captivating presentations that lead your audience down a path of discovery.

Brief history:

Prezi co-founder, Adam Somlai-Fischer, is an internationally renowned architect and visual artist who has been working with zooming presentations since 2001. Adam found that a zoomable user interface (ZUI) enabled him to explore the “big picture” overview of a floor plan and then zoom into the detail of individual rooms. Because there was no commercially-available zooming presentation editor, each presentation had to be coded by hand. Audiences were wowed and approached Adam to discover what presentation software he used. A few persuaded him to give them access to his code. Finally, in 2007, Budapest University of Technology professor Peter Halacsy convinced Adam to develop an editor so that anyone could make zooming presentations. After creating a prototype, they recruited a business-minded entrepreneur, Peter Arvai, to join as CEO — to help them build a product and a company. Prezi was launched in April 2009 from Budapest, leading to investments from TED conferences and Sunstone Capitol. The San Francisco office was established in November 2009.
 
 

Getting Started

  1. First Go to the Prezi Website http://prezi.com/ 
  2. Click the Sign up button.  This will take you to a few options to sign up.  If you are a student or educator prezi is a free service.  Otherwise there are two options to sign up for $59/yr or $159/yr depending on what package you choose.  As a student click the Student and Teachers button.
  3. After selecting the students option you must sign up with an educational e-mail account that is clearly linked with a school.  After providing  and confirming a password you are in!  
  4. Now that you are signed up as a member of prezi you can explore the website to learn more about the company, how to use prezi and view and use other pre-made presentations that have been made public.  
  5. There are three tabs at the top of the prezi website they are "Create" "Learn" and "Explore"  Use these buttons to navigate through the website and explore.  The best way to learn how to use prezi is to visit the "learn" tab and watch the three videos about how to use prezi, they are very useful and easy to understand.  
  6. Here is a sample of the first video:  
 

From this point it is just about playing with it to make it work for you.

Education:

Prezi obviously has direct use for educators, here is a list of a few of them:
  1. Sometimes the best way to present a large amount of information is through a presentation, and this is a way to do it that makes it more exciting and different for students.  It allows them to see the "big picture" of what you are trying to get accross.
  2. Since prezi is free to students it is an invaluable tool for them to learn as they present material in your classes.
  3. One of the most useful tools about prezi is that it is easily shared with multiple individuals who can then work on it simultaneously, (much like Google docs if you are familiar with it.) This allows students to do group work more efficiently and practically.  
  4. -A very large portions of the prezi's made are open to the public to view.  This is a wealth of knowledge for educators and students alike to tap into.  
  5. Here is an actual prezi about how prezi can help in the classroom.  It is really helpful and gives insightful tips on using prezi in the classroom environment: