Teaching students online comes with a boatload of challenges, but Google Slides has some great features to help you connect with learners both online and in the classroom! These features allow you to check real-time student engagement, help students navigate and interact with instructional resources, and enable you to teach more efficiently. Check out these tips and tricks built into Google Slides!
See Every Student’s Work in Real Time via Grid View
By default, Slides opens Filmstrip view when you open a new file, or open an existing file to edit it. Filmstrip view showcases one slide at a time in the main window as you work on it, with the complete set of slides open on the left side of the screen in a “film strip view.” While this view is great for working on Slides, Grid View offers superpowers for teachers when sharing slides with students!
To access Grid view, look to the lower left corner of the screen and choose Grid View.
How does GridView help teachers?
First, create one file for your class and grant each student editing rights. Preassign a slide to each student by slide number or by adding the student’s name as the title of the slide. As students work in real-time, you will see all their work instantly! Students can build class vocabulary notebooks, memory books, All About Me slides, animal habitat slides, show alternative ways to solve math problems, and more! The ideas are endless! Whether students are working remotely as a large group, in breakout rooms or in the classroom, you’ll see instantly who is engaged and who needs a check-in.
Help Students Easily Navigate Slides as Books through Page Setup
One challenge of Google Docs is locating a specific page of a multi-page document since there is no clear way to jump to a specific page. Students change fonts or font size and suddenly page 2 of your file is page 4 of their file. Slides prevent this problem! Treat your Slides file as a book. Under File, choose Page Setup and create a custom vertical page layout of 8.5 X 11 inches. Now, each new slide can be treated as a page of a book or notebook. Slide 3 is now Page 3 – for everyone! As an added bonus, by creating pages the same size as typical notebook sheets, you can print pages for students who require paper vs digital pages.
Slide Layouts: Titles Become Tables of Contents
Have you ever noticed that when in Present mode, you can pop up a list of slides and easily jump between them in your control panel at the lower left of the screen? Did you know you can control what pops up there to help you with navigation? It’s easy! Just use the Title element on any slide layout to enter the words you’d like to use in the index/table of contents. Suggestions: Student Names, Slide Topics (animals, planets, community helpers) or even math problems!
Captions to Practice Reading
We know students need all the reading practice they can get! Captions in Google Slides is an easy tool to allow students to practice reading by auto captioning the words you speak. Just click present then click the caption button in your control panel at the lower left. Note that you have options to control the size and position of the next. Sometimes it’s easier to read by moving it to the top of the screen!
Desktop Area as Storage Space
Just like in the physical classroom, sometimes you need some space on your desk to allow you to easily switch things up or add an element of surprise. Google Slides allows you to use the area around the slide as a desktop. Use the space to store digital sticky notes or images to engage students. Use it for feedback symbols.
When sharing your screen via Zoom, click the advanced tab after you share screen and choose Portion of Screen. Students will only see what’s inside the green border but you can see all your slides in edit mode as well as items on the digital desktop. It also makes your shared content larger and easier for students to see on small screens!
Small changes can bring big rewards! What features of Slides make your teacher life easier? Use these special features of Google Slides to make teaching just a little bit easier. :)
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