It's okay to look at your notes. And it's okay to look at them in silence!
Do you find that hard to believe? Most of us begin this presenting game fearful of our moments of silence. We feel vulnerable. They'll think I've lost my way. They'll think I don't know my stuff. If I'm silent, they'll see that I'm nervous. Aagh! I have lost my way. That's why most speeches are over-seasoned with ums and ahs. As beginners, we can't stand our own silences.
Here’s an almost insatiable audience desire: "I want to know where I am in your presentation at all times."
A few speakers are so entertaining that the audience will suspend that desire, but if you’re like most presenters, your credibility goes up when you signpost.