CHIRP: The Longest 20 Seconds Ever

Yesterday, I told you about my classroom CHIRP presentations. As the name suggests, I ask my students to introduce themselves to the rest of the room and maybe even chirp a little bit about their career, hobbies, institution, relatives, and other fun personal details.

Since the students follow the pecha kucha format, they use exactly 20 slides, timed to last 20 seconds each.

That 6:40 can fly past pretty quickly. I’ve learned that the first 20 seconds tend to be the longest 20 seconds of the whole presentation. Starting and finishing with “Hi, I’m Dave” leaves about 19 very quiet seconds remaining on that first slide.

This quiet time allows me to remind students that they should have a ready-to-go introduction for themselves. This intro might not have to last 20 seconds or be a full-blown elevator pitch (which, of course, they should also have), but we all should know how introduce ourselves in a professional situation.

Include first and last name. Note the time of day (e.g., Good morning!), the context (I’m glad to share my CHIRP with you) and other relevant, appropriate details (I’m a junior and hoping for a career in marketing). Showing a little gratitude is also a great idea (thank you for watching my presentation).

How do you introduce yourself?

There are other teachable moments too. I ask students to describe themselves in one word. I ask them to state their ikigai, a Japanese word that means “reason for being.” I ask them to share their wabi-sabi, another Japanese word that means “beautiful flaw.”

And what do you know, when they go for their next job interview and the person on the other side of the table asks “what’s your greatest weakness,” the student is ready with an answer and a positive spin. A little method to the madness.

See? The CHIRP is more than just a classroom experience.

What do you think?

A glimpse at the dark side of CHIRPS tomorrow!