Organize Your Lessons with Google Slides!
Organizing your lessons can be a little tricky when you’re teaching remotely. Let me show you how I’m using Google Slides to help me keep lessons, activities, resources and links organized and in one place.
Read the Transcription
The New Normal
So this is certainly a first! I think this is actually the first video that I’ve even thought of videoing from my classroom.
So, here I am in my very empty classroom. I still have desks all piled up… empty, empty, empty.
My students are 100% remote right now. I’m going to be teaching from home tomorrow and Wednesday. Then, I’m going to be teaching inside my classroom for a couple of days a week.
Well, like every other year, I have been brainstorming how I can get myself organized. Every year, I create my own lesson plan pages and bind them together at Staples. I’m the kind of person that needs to create my own type of planner.
Now, in this world of remote learning, I have the need to figure out how to best relay all of my instruction to my students in a nice, organized way.
What I have found is that Google Classroom is lacking one thing… and that is a really good teacher resource area to keep links and keep all of our STUFF.
So I think I’ve come up with a solution and I can’t wait to share it with you!
This year, I’m utilizing Google Slides to help organize myself. It’s not necessarily an instructional tool, although it certainly can be. But it’s more of an organizational tool. I’m a very practical person and I like to have things all set and ready for me. So, especially when I’m online, I don’t want to be fumbling through a bunch of tabs and windows trying to get the right link at the right time.
I’m looking forward to sharing my strategy with you of how I’m organizing using Google Slides.
Google Slides?!?… Let’s take a look!
For the first few days, it’s important to incorporate ‘get to know you’ activities to build community and relationships. What I’ve decided to do is organize all of these different activities into slides.
Here’s my first screen slide that the kids will see as they’re entering their first Google Meet.
Then, these slides become these little notes of what I want to do. I know what I want to do. I don’t need to put the instructions inside the slides BUT the information on each slide helps my students and I understand what’s going on at different times during the day.
Set online expectations and connect with families!
One of the things I definitely want to do is go over some online expectations. Here are some that I want to be sure to go over:
- When and how to mute and un-mute themselves.
- When the camera should be on/off and how to turn it on/off.
- The importance of speaking and listening.
- Being timely
Here is a game that I learned about from Pocketful of Primary “Turn Your Camera On.” You will be able to find her link in the description. She has some fantastic ideas for the first day.
Then, we’re going to have to go over the schedule before they actually break for snack and for the library.
I wanted to type out our schedule so that they can have it right in front of them. This is great for families, too. This slide could also be used for links to the specialists’ classrooms and so on.
Color code parts of your day and then copy and paste!
Now, this slide in particular that I’m hovering over right now is something that I can copy and paste into my slideshow as many times as I need to every day until the kids are used to having their classes in their Google Classroom dashboard.
Once they come back from their library class, which is what they’ll have tomorrow, we’re going to start in on the starfish activity that I have planned for the first day of school.
I’ve decided to make a lunch & recess break slide. I changed the color of it, and this is something that I can make consistent, so every day that I add slides, I can just copy this.
All I do is click on it over here. I can copy and paste and it will be right there. I can put this slide wherever I want it to go.
So that’s going to be SUPER handy.
Since this is going to be slide after slide of just the first few days of school where we’re getting to know each other, et cetera, I think I would like to just keep everything in one slide show.
Create reusable slides for less prep work!
So I’ve named the presentation September and I store different types of slides from throughout my day here. Some examples might be:
- Different content areas
- Morning meeting/Closing meeting slides
- Break slides
- Whole class slides
- Small group slides
- Mute/Unmute or Camera on/off signal slides
- Transition slides
These slides I will use over and over again throughout the month. There is no need to recreate them each day! I want to make these slides almost like bookmark slides so that I can easily get from one day to the next.
Let me show you what I mean.
I’m going to go in here. I’m going to add a new slide and this slide I’m going to put first in I’m going to make this the date slide. This is going to be Tuesday, September 15, 2020.
I’ll put my name here. This is Petersen’s class, and I’m going to change the background so that when I’m scrolling through my slides, it’s extremely noticeable.
When I’m ready to start my second day of slides all I’ll have to do is change the date.
Move plans and activities around with ease!
Part of the reason why I want all these slides, at least for this whole first week, which is four days in one slide show, is because you know how first days go, right?
Sometimes you don’t get to things!
On the first day I was thinking about doing a Google Slide assignment. But you know what?… I think I’m going to move that to Wednesday.
See how easy that was?!?
Finally, I can move that assignment after the yellow Wednesday slide instead. Then I’m going to keep on building from there.
Teacher Resource Spot
On this slide, it’s basically for me more than the kids, because in Google classroom, there’s really no teacher resource spot.
That’s what prompted me to start making the slides in the first place.
I have a slide with the links that I want to be able to access easily instead of going through all those tabs as I was building out this slide.
Now, I have the links right to these resources on this slide. We’ll watch this video together and talk about it. Then I can go right back to the slide to stay on task and organized!
The next slide is where I will give them the link, make sure they have their username and passwords, make sure everyone can get in and give them some time to explore and play.
Like I said, this isn’t a detailed lesson plan. This is a guide to help me through the course of the day and give the students some visuals as we are going through the day.
Laying the foundation for SEAL and ARTs… even online!
Finally, we are going to have a closing meeting everyday. The closing meeting is a chance for us to reflect on the day.
I haven’t specifically figured out how I’m going to do this. I’m going to see how the flow of the day goes. I’m going to either have them practice using the comments in Google Meet, practice using the mute and un-mute and/or signals for when they want to raise their hand. Then, we are certainly going to end with some emotional recognition and self-awareness.
This is going to be some of the foundational work that I’m doing with my students in social-emotional learning. That way, we can dig even deeper as the year goes on and start to integrate the ARTs and SEAL into their day.
I definitely want to give a preview for tomorrow’s schedule.
This will give the students and the families an idea of what’s to come. I will reinforce that we are starting right at 8:30 in our Google Meet.
Then, I can begin planning for the rest of the week. My next day slides are a different color so it will be easy to scroll through and find things.
This is just a different form of color coding which some teachers really love and a way for me to get organized. It’s really important to me to feel organized and not scattered throughout the entire day, especially on the first day.
Lastly, if you have ways that you are getting organized, I would love to hear about them! The more ideas that we can share with one another, the BETTER! So, drop ideas in the comments and let me know how you are keeping organized with all of this remote learning stuff.
My name is Elizabeth Peterson. I can’t wait to hear from you! Have a fantastic rest of your day!
Resources Mentioned in the Video:
Pocketful of Primary Video of back to school activity ideas: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4FY7mrFMPac
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