Most of us have become adept at using Google Slides as a replacement for PowerPoint, and the first thing that many avoid PowerPoint users have noticed is that Slides is missing some of the toys and gadgets that PowerPoint has added over the years.
While Google hasn’t been able to replicate all of those missing tools yet, Slides has so much to offer teachers as a classroom tool that may not be as apparent. Since most of us haven’t explored some of the more useful aspects of Slides that can make it a more integral part of your teaching toolbox, here are some ideas to get you started.
Sharing and Commenting on Ideas
Not all Google Slides presentations have to be presented in front of the class. Like a Google Document, Slides can be shared within groups of students or between classes, so they can be a great way for students to develop ideas, organize their thoughts graphically, or collaborate on group assignments.
As you can see from this Tweet, because Slides is a Google App, some of its best attributes are built in. Here, students are using the app to present their ideas, and then they are sharing and commenting on those ideas in an organized way that can be saved and retrieved, not just lost in a group discussion.
Flyer or Brochure Creation (instead of Docs)
Use THIS TEMPLATE to create printable trifold brochures using Slides. The link will prompt you to make your own copy. The best part about it is that the brochure does not necessarily need to be printed. A few years back, there was an issue at our school with teachers who wanted their brochures printed in color. Well, color printing has become a thing of the past (really because it’s so expensive), so if aesthetics is what you’re looking for, just have the student turn in the digital copy. That way, they are not restricted to the printed version. They can add videos or links to the brochure and make it interactive.
To really boost the assignment, have students record their own audio sales pitches or tours to include, or have them film their own reviews. Interactive and collaborative. That’s how we earn #TRIADvances Badges!
For a reminder on how to adjust the format of a Google Slide, just follow the steps in the Tweet below:
Build Your Own Snowman (courtesy of @ericcurts)
For primary or early elementary teachers looking for fun easy and fun writing prompts, the Build a Snowman activity is a great one. Go to THIS LINK and make a copy of his presentation. Then create a presentation for each student or group. This can be easily done through Google Classroom.
Once each student or group has a copy of the presentation, they will find a blank snowman and seven pages of attributes like hats, shoes, facial feature and extras. The students design their own snowman and then complete a writing prompt based on what they created. There are more comprehensive directions and ideas on the page linked above.
(Eric is a great Twitter follow, by the way, and his website, controlaltachieve.com is one of our favorite spots for tech integration ideas.)
Create an eBook
Check out this earlier TRIADvances post that explains an easy way for students (or teachers, for that matter) to create great-looking eBooks using Slides. Because it works like a Google Document, you can also make the book interactive adding videos or links. You can also add gifs or other animated graphics. Use the brochure instructions above to adjust the size and shape of the slides to fit your book’s needs.
Even primary students can use this strategy. While illustrations can be difficult to create on the computer, they can always draw illustrations and scan or take pictures of them to include in the slideshow. This might take some extra work on the teacher’s part, but the finished product can be saved and shared over and over again. No need for giant magnets on the fridge!
Interactive Research (courtesy of @jmattmiller)
At the high school level, the correct presentation of research is a constant concern, and we so often keep falling back into the same rut of essay after essay. But presentations take up too much class time. However, teachers can still require students to have the same citations, paraphrasing and quotes integrated into their writing using Slides. This post from Matt Miller’s blog Ditch that Textbook has a bunch of creative and interesting ways for students to present their information. He specifically mentions Slides in a few of these, but they’re all worth the read. And again, the built-in Google Apps features make everything you do collaborative, sharable and interactive.