Google Slides is the G Suite product that lets you create presentations right in your browser. You can even work on a presentation at the same time as other people. All you need is a G suite account, which you have if you have a Gmail account. Google Slides is even easier to use with Explore. (Explore is also available in Docs and Sheets.)
Explore in Google Slides
The Explore feature was added to G Suite in September 2017. Explore can help you design better presentations in less time. Based on the content of your slide, it dynamically suggests designs. If you don’t see any suggestions, you may have too much text on the slide or your images may be too small. Try modifying those features and removing any added shapes to activate suggestions. You can use also use Explore to add images and other content to your presentation.
Add Content with Explore in Google Slides
Use explore to add content from the web or from your Google Drive. When you enter a query in Explore Search, you will receive results from the Web, Images and Drive.
Use the Web Search results to find content from the web that you can use. A select number of results are shown in the Explore window. When you click on a link, it opens in a new tab. To see more results, you can click on See all results on Google.
Find images and add them quickly and easily to your presentation. Hover over an image to display the + symbol and add it to your presentation. A hyperlink to the source image is automatically added to the inserted image.
Search your Google Drive for content. Clicking on a result opens the file in a new tab.
Google Slides Challenge
If you are new to Google Slides, do the tutorial from G Suite Learning in as little as 10 minutes. If you’re experienced, redesign an old presentation using Explore.
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Shadow Puppet EDU is a free, easy-to-use tool for creating videos using photos and video clips. Video has many uses in the classroom, as an effective learning tool in any subject. Students can narrate a process, or procedure, show the steps of a solution, present a published work, etc.
Features of Shadow Puppet EDU
- Combine video clips and images to make a video
- Record voice-over narration, add music or both
- Add animated text annotations and pointers
- Interact with images while recording
- Up to 100 items per video, and up to 30 min long
- Built-in web search for images and animated GIFs (can be disabled in settings)
- Automatic image citations are added at the end of videos that use web images
- Tap undo to redo the recording for a particular page.
- Copy a completed video to re-record it.
- Easy to share or save to the camera roll
- Works on iOS only
Ideas for Using Shadow Puppet EDU in the Classroom
- Create a presentation with images of all the new words for the week.
- Share three family traditions, using images, video clips, and text.
- Create a presentation to publish your research project.
- Create a presentation describing a field trip or a solution to a problem
- For more ideas, get the Activity guide.
Differentiation Using Shadow Puppet EDU
- Give students the photos/video clips needed for the video.
- Give students a completed video that they can re-record.
Considerations for Using Shadow Puppet EDU
- Have students create a storyboard before they create their video.
- If students are working in groups, assign them roles and rotate the roles so that every child experiences all the components of the process
Have a question about using technology in your classroom? Email email@example.com.
There are many online tools that allow you to quiz students in fun ways. Two of these tools are Kahoot and Quizziz. Kahoot follows a freemium model with a plus version that is meant for trainers. Quizziz is completely free and there is no limit on the number of quizzes that you can create or play. Both tools can be used in a group setting or by individual students.
These tools can be excellent for formative assessment to determine your students’ understanding of the material, either individually or collectively. Have students test themselves to find out their areas of strength and weakness for personalized learning. Teachers can create quizzes, but there is no reason that students couldn’t too!
The features depend on the choice of tool. This blog post compares them. In brief, Kahoot has more varieties of games, but Quizziz offers tighter integration with Google Classroom.
Considerations in Choosing a Quizzing Tool
Choose the tool based on the feature that you’re interested in. Consider the following features:
- Homework or learning center use
- Random order option
Try IT Out
Create an account on each site, and create a quiz that you can use with your class in the next 2-3 days. Compare the dashboard/teacher console in each tool to find out which one matches the way that you like to work. Have an idea how to use one of the tools? Leave a comment or make a post on this Padlet.
What is Flipgrid
Flipgrid is an app for video discussions. Pose questions, and let students respond with video instead of text. It provides a different medium for classroom discussions.
Flipgrid follows a Freemium model. You can have one grid with unlimited topics for free, or pay for a subscription to Flipgrid Classroom.
Features of Flipgrid
- Threaded video discussion
- Teachers post topics, videos, or links for discussion
- Students can respond to the prompt or to their peers (premium)
- Grids are private by default and can be password protected
- Choice of video length
- Each Flipgrid has a unique code
- Share your grid or topic with others with a link
- Privacy and moderation settings
- Each grid can hold an unlimited number of questions/topics
- Each question/topic can hold an unlimited number of responses
- Questions can include links to websites or documents
- Students do not need to log in to post
10 Ideas to use Flipgrid
- Have a conversation with a pen pal or an expert.
- Explore a concept with students.
- Collaborate on a topic with a class in another room or school
- Take on a persona of a character/historical figure to create a video
- Explain the solution to a Math problem
- Showcase a performance/presentation with a reflection
- Share examples of Math in the real world
- Post an opinion on a topic/question from the teacher or a classmate
- Post a book review
- Share a headline or memorable quote from a story or book
Differentiation using Flipgrid
- Instead of recording their voice, a child could hold up posters with words to the screen.
- If you can’t show a student’s face, use a static image for the recording
- Record a student’s answer after you ask him/her a question (for example, with younger students)
- Have students work in groups, with one of the jobs being that of the narrator. You can rotate roles.
- Have students practice what they are going to say. For older students, they can write out a short script as well.
- Although the videos are not very long, you may want students to storyboard them, depending on the situation.
- Students can post performance videos for reflection/feedback/comment
One word for the year example topic
If you have another example that you’d like to share, please post it in the comments.
Try out Flipgrid
By the time summer comes around, most teachers are ready for the break. It’s important to take time to rest and rejuvenate, whether that means spending time alone or with friends and family. For many teachers, summer is also a time for professional learning, and personal growth. I’ve spent time each summer engaged in learning, whether by attending conferences, taking online courses, completing work for a graduate degree, exploring and playing with my many bookmarks and saved links, participating in educational twitter chats, etc. Some summers, I’ve spent thousands of dollars on courses. This summer, I’m staying in Prague and minimizing my expenses. I’d like to share with you some of the free resources that I am exploring for professional/personal development this summer.
- Explore online resources for teaching and learning. Some suggestions are The Current by Educator Innovator, and The Teaching Channel.
- Explore the available resources on the ISTE Conference page, by session. The conference takes place June 25 – 28. Even if you can’t be at the conference, participate in ISTE Unplugged Live (I’m presenting on using Google Tools for Organization). Also, you could follow the #ISTE17 and #NotatISTE hashtags for free resources motivated by the ISTE conference. Also join the NotatISTE Google + community
- Participate in a MOOC from the Friday Institute
- Learn something new on AtomicLearning for 90 days with code NOTATISTE
- Take a course on Coursera
- Get Organized: How to be a Together Teacher
- Learn Computer Science Fundamentals from Code.org
- Complete a Google certification or Digital Citizenship and Safety course
- Complete a Computational Thinking course
- Become an Apple Teacher
- Join and participate in the Facebook community for Apple Teachers
- Participate in the Microsoft Innovative Educator Program
- Take an Intel Teach Elements Course
- Take a self paced course from the Library of Congress
- Take the Tinkering Fundamentals: A Constructionist Approach to STEM Learning Course created by Exploratorium
- Attend Edmodocon on August 1, 2017 to learn how Edmodo can be used in your classroom
Are you taking any other free courses this summer? Please share in the comments.
Feature image source: World Education Letters Learning, CC0