This isn’t my idea, but it’s one that I love, so I wanted to make one of my GIFs about it. I think that I first heard the idea from Eric Curts (@ericcurts).
Anyhow, Choose Your Own Adventure stories are a favorite from my childhood and if we can leverage them to help students be more active and engaged in the way that they show their knowledge of content, writing abilities or creativity – I’m in!
Here’s how to do it, first as a GIF, followed by step-by-step instructions. And remember, Eric’s post linked above is a great resource as well.
Create your starting slide.
In two separate text boxes (or with two separate pictures or with two separate words/phrases within a text box) provide options for the next step.
Create 2 new slides – these are the possible next steps.
Back on the starting slide, click on one of the text boxes, images or text within a text box.
Use the hyperlink button (or Ctrl+k) to link to the appropriate slide.
Repeat the process for the other option.
Now . . . add steps that branch off of those 2 options . . .
If you or your students make a really phenomenal Choose Your Own Adventure Slides project, I’d love to see it!
Every household has a junk drawer. And, for most Google Drive users, they have two: My Drive and Shared with Me. Everything is in there. Today, let’s focus on how to clean up your Shared with Me.
Here are 4 tips about cleaning up your Shared with Me, followed by a GIF displaying them:
If there are files you are 100% sure that don’t want, go ahead and delete them. You’ll still technically have access to them, but you won’t see them in your Shared with Me anymore (so good luck finding them). The original sharer will have no idea that you removed them and it won’t affect them (because you’re not the owner).
You can click Add to Drive to move files from your Shared with Me to your own Drive, where you can then organize it.
You can drag & drop files from the Shared with Me to anywhere in your Drive to organize them.
Once you’ve moved files into your Drive, you can delete them from your Shared with Me and they will stay in the location that you put them.
There are plenty of flash cards sites, apps and ideas out there. And many of them are great. But… it’s nice to not have to add another tool to your classroom, another site to your list of resources, another password for your students to remember and possibly another account for your students to access.
So, if you don’t need a fully-featured flash cards solution, stick with what you’ve got (and know): Google Slides.
Students can work together to create the cards.
You can assign each kid a card to make . . . and 5 minutes later you have a whole deck.
Cards can involve pictures from a Google image search, pictures from students’ Drive or webcams, drawings and videos.
You can project it in class to have a class-wide review.
Students can use it to study from their cell phones and other devices.
If you have a class website, you can embed the Slides on the site.
Students can make a copy of the Slides to make them their own, add information that helps them, delete cards they already know and add cards for terms they struggle with.
*Disclaimer: I’m really not a flash cards, vocabulary kind of guy. Knowing the lingo has some value, but in general… memorization of stuff that fits on a flash card is just that: memorization. Since I know that it’s an important part of a lot of classrooms, I want to share this strategy for doing it, but I hope that you do it along with other types of learning experiences, like Project-Based Learning and other inquiry-based strategies.
Ok, so, I never said that. Well, actually, I guess I just did. Anyhow, it’s a trick that’s known in most edtech circles, but it’s useful enough to make sure that everyone knows it:
Change the “/edit” or “/view” (or whatever) at the end of a Google Apps file’s URL to “/copy” and it will force the person clicking the link to make a copy of it (as if they had clicked File > Make a Copy).
Important: make sure the doc is shared, at least as “Can View,” prior to using this. You can’t copy a doc that you can’t view!
With the rise of Google Classroom and other LMS options, it’s not as useful as it used to be, but it has its use cases: sharing a resource on your website, posting forms for use in your school district, sharing optional activities for classes or clubs and much more. It works in Drawings, Sheets and Slides as well! Here’s how to do it:
Just in case, here are those steps:
Share the doc as “Anyone with the Link Can View.”
Copy the link to the doc.
Change the “/edit” or “/view” or “/edit?usp=sharing” to “/copy”
Listen, I get it – when you’re showing your students the chambers of the heart, you want to have “Total Eclipse of the Heart” playing. And, when you teach your class about the food chain, you need “Hungry Like the Wolf” rocking out of your speakers. But, guess who doesn’t get it? Google. No audio in Google Slides. Sorry, no music for you.
But! I’ve got your back. When you present about the states of water, you need to be playing this, or maybe this. I didn’t invent this hack, but I created a GIF to showcase it for you.
Step by step instructions are below the GIF.
Insert > Video
Search for & Insert the video for the song you want from YouTube
Right Click, Video Options
Select “Autoplay when presenting”
If desired, set a specific start time
Make the video tiny
Rock out when in presentation mode
Keep in mind – your song will stop when you move on to the next slide, so plan accordingly
Note – this is a copyright gray area (or worse), for sure. I always try to use Vevo videos, because we at least we know that those were uploaded by the companies that own the rights to those music videos.
Need a flyer? A sign? A visually appealing handout?
Google Docs is a great word processor, but it can be hard to get images, text and word art laid out in just the right way. Tools like LucidPress are great for this, but they have a learning curve. For most educators and students, Google Slides is perfect for this – we know how to add & resize pictures and text as well as how to move them around on the screen.
So, why not use Google Slides for creating Printed Materials? Go to File > Page Setup and give your slides the dimensions of your piece of paper. Bam.
We all know from experience, as well as the infamously-hysterical and on-point “Death by PowerPoint,” that slideshows should involve minimal text. But, for many people, this is where cognitive dissonance enters. They believe this to be true, but need somewhere to plan what they will say.
Well, Google Slides has a spot for “Speaker Notes,” and here’s how you print them to have ready during your next presentation:
There are multiple options for creating animations (GoAnimate, Scratch, etc.) but my favorite way to do it is creating Stop Motion Slides. I like that I can make it exactly how I want it in this format. I think this has tons of potential in all subject areas (Please comment or share on Twitter with the hashtag #StopMotionSlides if you come up with any cool uses for it).
There are two main steps:
Create a Google Slideshow where each slide is an incremental change from the previous one (like a flipbook).
Open the slideshow up in Presenter view and use a screencasting tool (i.e., Camtasia, Screencastify, Screencast-o-matic) to record it as a video.