Recently, I was fortunate to be a guest on the awesome Google Teacher Tribe Podcast. Not only are Matt & Kasey rockstars, but their show is my favorite education podcast. It was an honor and a blast.
It’s a tradition on the show for the guest to create a lesson plan that listeners can use. I chose to take a few ideas that I’ve posted about here and combine them into the Ultimate App Smash Lesson. The lesson combines #StopMotionSlides, Screencastify & FlipGrid. It can be used with any just about any content and is appropriate in most grades, starting in around 3rd grade.
You can find the lesson at bit.ly/ultimateappsmash. I hope you enjoy it . . . and I’d love to see some of what your kiddos create when you use it!
I’ve posted about #StopMotionSlides before and there are others out there (I think that Eric Curts’ and Matt Miller’s are both pretty definitive), but as usual – I like to encapsulate all good Googley stuff in GIF format. So here we go . . . some GIF-style tips for making really rad #StopMotionSlides projects. Continue reading Tips for Creating Stop-Motion Slides
In February of 2017, I found my niche in the online #edtech world – and a new passion – creating #eduGIF’s. In the time since then, I’ve been asked dozens, if not hundreds, of times how I create them. Here I’ll dive into 1) a little background on what I do & why I use the tool I use and 2) other options to consider. Continue reading Comparing GIF Creation Options
Have a Google Slides-deck that you sometimes present in 45 minutes and other times in 75 minutes?
Change up the slides that you use in each class based on formative assessment or student interests? Have a set of Slides that you use in two different classes, one with more remedial needs and the other with need for enrichment?
It might be beneficial to hide certain slides, either to simply not show certain content (in the 2nd & 3rd questions above) or in interest of time (in the 1st question above). Using the “Skip Slide” option will help you do this. Just right-click (or 2-finger click) on a slide on the left and select “Skip slide.” Check it out in the animation below:
I’ve done a number of posts about Screencastify, but recently I was reading a blog post that presented an idea that I had not previously thought of. In it, the author talks about using a screencasting tool to give both visual and auditory feedback on a student’s work. It seems to me that this would be so much more useful for a student than just comments on the doc. Plus they’d be more likely to view it.
Add in the ease of use with Screencastify – quickly sharing in Google Drive – and you’ve got a win-win. Below is a GIF I made to share the process. In the GIF, I am giving (fake) feedback on a Google Doc, but it could be anything. I could even show how it falls on a rubric within the video!
You could even have students give each other feedback this way!
One last note – if you start doing this regularly, you could create one folder in your Drive for each of your students and then drag the videos into those folders for the students to view.
Need slides running on loop during an Open House or other event? Here’s how to do it!
It’s super simple!
- File > Publish to the Web
- Link (not embed)
- Select the amount of time between slides (unfortunately, all slides have to be same length. Need some slides to show for longer? Duplicate them so that they show twice.)
- Decide if you want it to start playing as soon as you open it.
- Decide if you want it to loop (restart).
- Access the link. Hit the full screen button. That’s it!
Note: If you’d like it to be a slideshow of pictures that are in your drive, I recommend the Drive Slides extension (by Matt Miller & Alice Keeler) for getting those images quickly into a slideshow. It’s limited to 50 images/slides, but you could always make separate slideshows and then import the slides from one into the other.
Note: if this is for a permanent hallway display or sign, you should try out Chrome Sign Builder.
You can also select embed to easily embed the auto-playing, auto-looping slides into a non-Google Sites webpage, like this:
Continue reading AutoPlay & Loop in Google Slides
This post by Meghan Zigmund calls App Smashing “The art of imaginatively using multiple apps to create an enhanced project.”
Two of my favorite edtech tools right now are Screencastify and FlipGrid. One missing feature in Screencastify is an easy platform for students seeing each other’s recordings. One missing feature in FlipGrid is including screen recordings, rather than just webcam recordings.
Enter App Smashing. On a Chromebook, it’s pretty easy to record in Screencastify and then post in FlipGrid. Check out how in the GIF below. After the GIF, check out a list of possible applications of this. (Did I leave something out? Feel free to share it in the comments or on Twitter!)
Tons of ideas for how to use this . . .
- Narrate Google Slides, like the example above.
- Show how to do something on the computer.
- Share a piece of writing in Google Docs, like a poem.
- Share and explain a Scratch project.
- Show off a #StopMotionSlides video.
- Have multiple students give feedback on 1 writing project
NOTE: If you’re not on a Chromebook, you’ll likely need to download your video from Screencastify (or Google Drive) before uploading it to FlipGrid.
Google Sites are an awesome tool for teachers to make sites, for students to make digital portfolios, for students to create projects and more! One of the best features is the ease of embedding Google files into them. The most important thing to keep in mind when doing so, is to make sure that the Doc, Slides or whatever you’re hoping to embed has the appropriate sharing settings. If they don’t, they might not be seen by your audience. Check out in the GIF below what happens when you embed a private Google Doc onto a public Google Site.
Note: In the animation, I use an Incognito Tab to test the site. If your site is intended for the public, this is a great way to make sure it’s set right!
On Twitter, Micah Carlin-Goldberg reminded me of a great way to make sure that your docs are always “Anyone with the Link Can View” prior to putting them on your site:
I prevent the problem by adding (Shift+Z) all website items to a folder that has anyone with the link permissions. Because Drive permissions of a folder apply to the contents adding them to the folder makes them visible on the website.
One function in Google Slides that most people don’t notice is there is “Edit Master.” This option is great for adding branding to your slides and much more. Here are some of the things that you can do in there, followed by a GIF of how to do it:
- Change the font style for all of your slides
- Add a logo or watermark
- Change background colors
- Make all slides match the theme of a lesson or presentation
- Change the layout (find that you’re always moving the title up to give more space to type? Do it here)
- Add new slide layouts (need a 3-column layout?)
- Change layout of all of your slides at once
- Lock objects in place (the pictures become part of the background!) for activities with students
- Create layouts for certain uses (i.e., Yearbooks, eBooks, etc.)
Arial 11!? Seriously, Google!? Does anyone like their Docs to be typed in Arial 11?
Here’s how to change your default font style so that it’s what you typically use, so that you don’t have to do it each time. In the GIF below, I show how to change your “Normal Text.” Note that you can follow the same steps to change the default formatting for titles, headings, etc.
Here’s the animated process, followed by the step-by-step directions
Continue reading Change your Default Font in Google Docs