One of my activities that I love is taking my reptile family members to schools for sharing. I can talk about reptiles for hours. Of course, with the pandemic, I’m not able to do these live presentations for now.
I’ve offered to present my reptiles using Zoom meetings, but then decided I might try a live Facebook talk. I had seen others do them and it looked straightforward enough. I chose a Thursday at 3:00 pm MST as a good time to start. I picked my topic, one of my book’s birthdays, and collected some props.
I have a standup banner printed with my company names and thought it would make a good background for my talk. I pulled out the six-foot banner and assembled it (no easy feat), laying it out on the floor to tie it tight to the corners and sides. When I went to put it upright, I discovered how tall my hallway ceiling was—much lower than the rooms of my home! After whacking the ceiling all the way down the hallway, I reached my broadcast spot.
I set my chair and table in position and moved my laptop over. It was fully charged and should easily last for an hour or so. More on that later. I watched the clock move closer to 3:00 pm. I was poised to click on the ‘Live’ button. Precisely at 3:00, I clicked the button expecting to see my face come up. Instead, I went to a page with a lot of settings! Oops. I glanced quickly over my choices, made a few selections and continued to ‘being live.’ Whew!
I was having a great time discussing rattlesnakes and my book about them, Don’t Make Me Rattle, when a “low battery” notification came up on my screen–which was more like a “no battery” notification. My screen went blank just as I quickly realized I should sign off. In nine minutes, my entire laptop’s battery was drained! Lesson learned. In the future, I will make sure my laptop is plugged in. I’m sure I have a longer cord somewhere.
But, in those nine minutes, I realized something important. I miss the interactions in the classrooms. I discovered I do want to interact with people. Facebook Live allows me to receive live comments and questions—how fun! It will be the means for me to reach out about my books, the importance of science, and my reptilian family members.
Look for me on Thursdays at 3:00 pm MST on Elaine Powers on Facebook. You’ll see my smiling face with an ocean beach scene in the background.