Google Slides: Drag and Drop Activities

Create drag and drop activities in Google Slides!

Google Slides really is one of my personal favorite apps in the G-Suite because of its versatility. It sounds crazy and impossible to do but creating drag and drop activities for student use is a very real possibility! Adding this to your instructional activities not only gauges your students’ understanding, but it removes a ‘worksheet’ from a static realm into a dynamic one, where your scholars are operating at a higher level in Bloom’s and deeper depth of knowledge! So how exactly does one create a drag and drop activity?

Step One: Create an immovable background of content that you DO NOT want students to be able to click on or manipulate. This can be done by creating a design template in Google Drawings. You’ll want to create your worksheet’s layout/design in a Drawing and once you’ve completed your layout/design you will download that Drawing as a .png file (.png files tend to keep text sharp and will allow transparent backgrounds to save).

Step Two: Open a new Slides presentation, right-click on the slide and select ‘Change background,’ then select ‘Choose image’ button. From here, you either drag your desired file into the image drop window, or search for it on your computer. This will upload your Drawing into your Slide bringing it one step closer to a digital worksheet. You will notice that your Drawing has stretched to fit the dimensions of your Slide, so to fix that, click File<Page Setup and change your Sildes dimension from the standard ‘Widescreen 16:9’ to custom dimensions of 10”x7.5” then apply your changes.

Step Three: Now add your draggable content to your slide. This can be text or images, or a combination of both. If you want to have draggable images, you can either download them from the web, or create new ones in a Drawing, customize what you want and download the image to your computer in order to add it into your Slide. To add text, you will use the provided tools in Slides, but to add an image, you either drag and drop it onto your Slide or click Insert<Image and upload it that way.

Step Four: Now get the product to your students! This can be done by adding the assignment to a Google Classroom or by link-sharing your document. Link sharing is a great way to get digital content to students. This is done by selecting the ‘Share’ button in the upper right corner of your Slides worksheet, then selecting ‘Get shareable link’ and changing the accessibility to On - anyone with the link. When you get a shareable link, it automatically copies the link into your clip board. What you will want to do is open a new browser window, paste the copied link into it, and then remove the word ‘edit’ and all characters after it at the tail end of link and place in the work copy. Then highlight that entire link with ‘copy’ and use Yellkey.com to shorten your URL. You will have to write that URL onto the board for students to type into their browser. Phew! That sounds like a lot more than it is, but I need to be as clear as I can in my communication to you about this amazing feature!

To actually see what I am talking about, please view the attached YouTube video from Matt Miller.

Creating moveable digital activities with Google Drawings + Slides

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