Most societies have one member who ends up becoming the “go-to” person whenever there’s a request to give a presentation at a school or to a group of homeschoolers or Scouts. And that person often gets burned out because no one else steps up to help. One reason folks typically don’t volunteer is because most of us are amateurs, uncertain or uncomfortable with our level of knowledge when it comes to giving an earth science presentation. (Plus, public speaking ranks high on the list of anxiety-producing events for most of us, whether talking to adults or kids.) To help resolve this situation within my own Ventura (California) society, I sat down over the 2012 holidays and wrote “scripts” for the most common presentations that I give. Each includes a Learning Objective, a list of Recommended Materials, and then a step-by-step guide (with photos) through the presentation, whether teaching about the three rock types, mineral identification, economic uses of minerals, fossils, or your state mineral or fossil. I also provide some “Rockhound Jokes” to help enliven a talk and a glossary of geological terms used in the presentation. The goal is to give anyone and everyone a “script” that enables them to confidently give an earth science presentation within their local communities and to expand the pool of local society members who are able to help us all accomplish our goals as 501(c)(3) nonprofit educational societies—while having fun! I welcome additional “scripts” to add to the manual. Email me yours at jbracethroadrunner.com. Let’s make this a living, ever-expanding resource.
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