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Do not hand write them. It looks amateurish. Also, limit
the text of each to six lines - no more than six words per line.
Don’t copy everything you are saying. If you do, why not give
your audience a handout? Just provide a few key points. Less
Use upper and lower case letters rather than block ones,
as they’re much easier to read. Do not write vertically as this
is too difficult for your participants’ eyes to scan. Use dark
colours such as black, red, blue or green rather than orange,
yellow and light brown. Pick shades which show at a distance.
Mix different colours and type styles to highlight contrasting
Some effective transparencies are made on a blue or black
background, with the words and pictures highlighted in yellow
or white. There are courses available specifically on how to
prepare and use overhead transparencies. 3M, for example, is
one company that offers instruction.
An effective technique to help you remember nitty, gritty
details is to write all of the notes pertaining to a particular
overhead transparency on the cardboard border and number
them! Only you will know that you have them! Position the
notes so that you can read them by glancing at the transpar-
ency as you face the audience.
Overhead notes are especially useful for things involving
names, dates and descriptions. Why remember details if you do
not have to? Write them down instead. (See diagram on
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