Using drag-and-drop in Google Slides to create interactive activities

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One advantage of so many people providing remote instruction is the many new ideas to make teaching more interactive. One of these is the drag-and-drop activity for Google Slides. As of yet, the activity cannot give automatic feedback to the student, but it does allow for creativity and customization with a minimum of effort. This article explains how to create a slide and gives some teaching ideas.

Here are the basics for how to create a slide:

  1. Open a Google Slide and add to it any items that should be stationary, such as a table for items to be placed in or instructions for the activity. Many people like to remove the text boxes provided to create a clean slate before adding other items.
  2. Select File > Download > PNG image to save the slide as a graphic.
  3. Make the graphic be the background — select Slide > Change background > Choose image, browse to select the png file you just created, click Insert, then click Done.
  4. Add moveable items such as text boxes or pictures onto the slide. Tips:
    — Add a background color to text boxes to make them more visible.
    — To search for graphics, select Insert > Image > Search the web, then type the item you are looking for in the search box.
    — If you want an item to be selectable multiple times, select the item and type Ctrl-D to duplicate it. Select all the items, right-click, and select Align horizontally > Middle, then Align vertically > Middle. You will now have a stack of items that look like one item.
  5. Make a copy of the file to share with each student. For detailed instructions, see https://alyssateaches.com/share-google-slides-with-students/.

Ideas for Use

Literacy

Syllable sorting: Have students sort items based on the number of syllables in the word.

Word pattern sorting: Have students sort words by pattern (e.g. silent e, rhyming, or a consonant combination).

Sentence creation: Provide a clause that starts with a capital letter, a clause that starts with a lowercase letter, and a connective word, and have students put together a sentence.

Geography

State/country identification: Have students label the states in the union or the countries on a map. see Pocketful of Primary’s YouTube video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-byn2YTVeWU.

Mathematics

Money counting: Have students indicate how use quarters, dimes, nickels and pennies to add up to a defined amount. For an example of this, see EZ EdTech!’s YouTube video, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=S4U-8X4zKEs

For many other ideas and video instruction, search for “Google Slide drag and drop” on the Internet and YouTube.

You can also find Google Slide templates on Slidesmania.com and/or Teachers Pay Teachers at https://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Browse/Search:google%20slides%20drag.

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