Monthly Archives: March 2006

Speaker Tips: Talking Genealogy

Ken Aitken profile

I just discovered that BusinessWeek magazine’s Web site has an interesting but brief slide show on the “10 Worst Presentation Habits” ( Take a look. Perhaps you can yearn from someone’s errors, to be a better genealogy teacher or speaker.

More important, however is what you find on the bottom of the first page of the site – a link to the Best Business Communicators slide show. Go take a look at tell me if you think it has relevance for the genealogy teacher,speaker.


Taking a Cadillac to School


By now you know my delivery vehicle on sight.  Recently Professor Linda Main of San Jose State University invited me to take a spin in a Cadillac. San Jose State has moved into web-based instruction in a serious way and has invested in a web-based course-management system called Blackboard.  Let me tell you a bit about it.

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Musical Intro for Speakers

Red Maple Leaves.jpg It was a beautiful autumn afternoon in the Okanagan and as I walked home from school lost in a daydream, a strange idea crossed my mind: wouldn’t it be great if I had a sound track for my life. Perhaps I am closer to this than ever before.
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Confessions of a Horder


I have been a bit of a pack rat. This weekend I had to face my past. My wife gave me the ulimatum that the bankers boxes of old files had to go. What you see here is the remaining 3 boxes. This is a symptom of a problem, and a cry for a simple solution.

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Educating the Genealogy Librarian

George G. Morgan of Aha! Seminars has authored a new on-line course for genealogy librarians “Cooperative Ventures and Referrals” available as part of the Genealogy Librarianship Certificate program from the National Institute for Genealogical Studies and the Faculty of Information Studies at the University of Toronto.

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Speaker’s Tip: Sing before Speaking

Ken Aitken profile There is a song for every occasion, or so I’ve taught my children. However, as The Hermit Poet  will attest, my singing is overrated. So this morning when  I read about Rita Risser, a motivational speaker, who warms up for speaking engagemments by singing gospel music, I had a good laugh. Yet there is something too this that speakers and teachers can learn.

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Speaker Fees

Kenflower.JPG I am a great admirer of Helen F.M. Leary. She’s is a thinking person’s genealogist. I’d hire her in a flash if I was faced with a research problem in her corner of the world.  Helen wrote an excellant chapter in Elizabeth Shown Mills, Professional Genealogy (Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing, 2001) entitled,  “Lecturing” and filled wiith excellant advice for professional genealogists interested in genealogy education as an aspect of their work.  She says some interesting things about speaker’s fees.

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