While creative classes tend to be more visual in nature, with a little imagination, business-centric classes can be just as engaging! Having great class visuals can illustrate your points, keep students watching, and help you come across as a captivating teacher. As you plan your next class for students who want to step up their business or tech skills, make sure to keep these helpful tips in mind:
1. Consider your background: Although a plain blank wall can be a good starting point for filming your class, adding a little style to your background can help you connect with your students and come across as more professional. Do you have a great office or studio that reflects your brand? Is there an interesting spot in your living room that showcases your personality? Community and content strategist Monika Kanokova sets up her shot just right in An Insightful Guide to Becoming a Freelancer. Experiment with different locations until you find the perfect setup! Learn more about setting up the perfect background for your videos here.
2. Showcase your process: Skillshare students love classes that feel demystifying and actionable, so help guide them through your class by taking them through your own thinking process, whether that’s sketching out your ideas, making notes on a whiteboard or writing on post it notes! Brand strategist Mark Pollard takes students through his brainstorming exercises with nothing more than a sharpie and a piece of paper in Brand Strategy: Build a Business that Lasts.
3. Include a presentation: A great way to highlight your points and help students follow along with the class is by including a slide presentation. Keep your slides engaging by maintaining a consistent visual style, and keeping text concise. Elizabeth Hague creatively visualizes her talking points through carefully selected quotes and images in Failing Forward: Improve Your Career by Embracing the Big “F”. Find out more about creating a slide presentation for your class here.
4. Show a case study: To make your class feel actionable, use a case study or example to back up the theories you are teaching. Show students step by step how you used the same process in the past and how you found success with it, or take students through a fictional example so that they can see how to apply your method A great way to do demonstrations is through screencasting. You can find out more about screencasting here. In her class Selling on Etsy: How to create a successful online shop, artist Bonnie Lecat does a fantastic job of walking students through relevant examples to illustrate the steps of setting up a successful Etsy shop.
5. Mix up your media: In addition to slides, talking head segments, and screencasting, think about how you might use other forms of media to add variety your lessons. Stock images, videos, or illustrations can help break up a long explanation. Even something as simple as floating text here and there can highlight key points and help keep your students engaged. Why not try including some music or even some fun sound effects? Kristina Turner, owner of crochet studio Tiny Curl, incorporates a variety of media including images from her own business, floating text, and fun background music to make her class exciting and engaging.
6. Have a conversation: Students want to get to know you the real you. Forget about that camera in front of you, and instead imagine that you are speaking to a good friend. How would you chat through your concepts with them? Your gestures and body language can help students feel at ease, so just relax and be yourself! Illustrator and designer Brooke Glaser comes off as a friendly and approachable teacher in Make a Living as an Artist: Strategies for Crafting Your Creative Business.
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