Tech Tip Tuesday – Google Hacks for Remote Learning

Interesting times we are living in, aren’t they?

Teachers everywhere are scrambling to provide online content for their students. On top of that, they are preparing for what may be an online start in the fall. In this tech tip, I’m going to show you a Google hack with Slides that you can use to make your presentations more interactive for your students.

Animations Help to Isolate Ideas

I always use animations in my google slides. I feel like doing so helps me emphasize the most important parts of a lesson. It also avoids the “head-down-madly-copying” syndrome. I want students to interact with the content and each other!

So sharing a Google Slide presentation as a lesson is problematic. In edit mode, my presentations are basically just pretty google docs with pictures. In a remote learning environment, I feel like my students lose too much if I just share my slides and tell them it’s the content.

The Secret is to Hack the URL

So…here’s a hack you can use to ensure students get your presentation in “Present” mode.

Back out the URL up through the word edit and replace it with “present.” Hit your enter/return key. Voila! Now you’re in present mode. A huge bonus of doing it this way? You still have your tabs, bookmarks, extensions. You get present mode inside your browser, instead of it taking over your entire screen!

Here’s a quick video:

Present Mode in Your Browser!

Wait. Your Students Will Do That On Their Own?

Nope. Probably not. So the next step is to only share the present link with students so that all they do is click and they are in.

There are three steps to this:

  1. You have to make sure the sharing settings of your slide show are “anyone with a link can view.” (Or “anyone in <Your Organization> with a link can view.”)
    THIS IS SUPER IMPORTANT
  2. Copy the URL with the “present” in the URL.
  3. Paste the link in a Google Doc to share with students. This step is super-important because pasting the link in the LMS results in your LMS “seeing” it as a Google Slide, so it opens in Google Slides edit mode.

I like to paste the link in a guided notes Google Doc – that way, students have their Guided Notes template and presentation in tabs, side-by-side.

Here’s another short video – it repeats a little bit from the video above, but then gets to the google doc process.

Want Some Written Instructions?

I’ve got an instruction sheet with links and more support available for free on Teachers Pay Teachers. You can find it here: Google Hacks for Blended Learning. Let me know what you think in the comments below or in the feedback on TpT.



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