It’s the end of 2020, which will now always be known as the year that the COVID-19 Pandemic hit, and for educators everywhere-this meant the huge change to virtual instruction for many. With virtual learning for students comes a learning curve for educators as well. As an SLP, I have learned more this year about different programs, extensions, strategies and templates to make virtual learning a success. One of my absolute favorite programs to use is Google Slides. There are so many amazing things that you can do with Google Slides! If you aren’t already using it, you should be! Today, let’s discuss the amazing capabilities of Google Slides including extensions and templates and why you should definitely be using it as an SLP.
Google Slides Extensions
- Record to Slides
Are you already using the basic features of Google Slides but sometimes wish that you could record a lesson with your face on the slides talking to students as if you were really there guiding them through the lesson? This would come in handy for classroom teachers but is also great for SLPs who send homework or lessons home virtually for students to work through independently. Well now with the Record to Slides Chrome Extension, you can record video of yourself immediately on Google slides and it could not be easier! Keep in mind that this does not record your entire screen like a Loom video would but just your face for the video.
Follow these directions to try it:
-Download the Record to Slides Chrome Extension first (it’s FREE!)
-Open up Google Slides
-Create a textbox (if you want )to the right of the slide (not on the slide). You can use this as your script if you feel that you need it because the camera will cover the actual slide when you open it (This will make a lot more sense when you try it).
-Since you already downloaded the extension, when you open Google Slides you will see a blue camera at the top right near the slideshow button:
-Click the camera and it will open up on your screen.
-When you are ready to record, click the green circle to record.
-Press the red circle button to stop recording, then press OK.
-This will insert right into your slides. You can move it and resize it as needed. (It will take a few seconds to appear depending on the length of the video)
-It will also save in your Drive to a folder called “Record Slides.” Find the video and go to the sharing settings.
-Click “Get shareable link.”
-Change the sharing settings to “Anyone with the link can view.” (Just as you would when sending a google folder or google document). You want to make sure that all of the students will be able to view the video without any issues.
- Slides Timer
The Slides Timer extension is anyone’s dream who works with young students virtually right now. I don’t know about you, but in my therapy room at school, I used timers a LOT, as did the special education teachers that I worked with. Sometimes I wanted to break up the lesson into 2 or 3 shorter parts; sometimes it was best for students who could only work for a few minutes and then needed a break. This was a great auditory modification to help students succeed. Now, you can easily add a timer to your Google Slides presentations as well. You can create a countdown, use the stopwatch feature or the digital clock in slides. You can download the Slides TImer extension here.
- Pear Deck
Pear Deck for Google Slides is a really neat extension. It is the fastest way to transform presentations into classroom conversations. What if you could instantly see who’s confused and who’s ready for more? That’s the power of Pear Deck. This is a great tool for SLPs who are giving teletherapy lessons to small groups. Students can respond to short-answer questions, answer multiple choice questions, drag icons or even draw an image to respond to your question on their computer! This is great for all educators because they can see live answers from students simultaneously instead of calling on students one at a time on camera or always having the same student try to answer.
To get the Pear Deck Extension:
-Open Google Slides
-Click “add-ons” at the top and Pear Deck should appear.
-If it doesn’t appear, you can click the “get add-on” button.
-You will then have to install it on your computer.
Kami is one of my absolute favorite extensions by far for Google Chrome!
If you have never tried it, I am begging you to give it a shot! I did a blog post all about the Kami Extension just a few months ago so you can read about the Kami extension here.
FREE Templates for Google Slides
Do you ever feel as if you need some fun or even holiday-themed backgrounds for your Google Slides presentations but you just don’t have the extra time to create them? Look no more because there are plenty of options out there.
Here are my TOP 3 FAVORITE Templates for Google Slides that are FREE:
There are TONS of templates to choose from on here for both Google Slides and Powerpoint. You can search for templates by subject or color.
There are a lot of templates on this site for education, including digital notebook templates for educators! HUGE time saver! This website also has templates for Powerpoint in addition to Google Slides.
Scroll down the page about halfway to see the templates on this site. The
really great part is that the templates here are games that many students will actually be interested in or want to play, such as “Would You Rather?,” Family Feud,” and “Who Wants to Be a Millionaire.” I would highly recommend these for any educators and SLPS working with older students.
Pre-Made Products for Google Slides
Finally, if you really just do NOT have the time to create your own lessons and assignments for your virtual learners through Google Slides, check out some pre-made products for Google Slides here. There are over 20 Google Slides products in the store and they are of course all for Speech and Language Therapy. Sometimes it is the easier route to go because creating materials takes up so much of our precious time! (Which we can never get back!)
Do you use Google Slides? What is your favorite extension for it?
Join the SRN newsletter!
I'm so glad you stopped by! If you'd like to keep up with the newest posts and get exclusive free downloads, please sign up for the newsletter! Your first freebie is ready as soon as you subscribe and confirm your email!