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Making a Calendar with Google Slides

📖 Standard

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.WHST.6-8.6 Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and present the relationships between information and ideas clearly and efficiently.

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RH.6-8.1 Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources.

⏰ Time

200 minutes (approximately 5 class periods)

📲 Technology Required

Students will use the Internet to find a minimum of 12 appropriate images to represent their topic. Students will need access to a device with Google Slides to create calendar.

📃 Summary

This lesson plan allows students to explore a topic of interest to create an informational calendar. Students are to pick a topic, include an image for each month, brief explanation and source for that image. At the end of the project, students perform a self-assessment.

📚 Lesson

Introduce Assignment to Students

Calendar Assignment

In this assignment, you will be creating a personalized calendar using Google slides. Your calendar must consist of a minimum of 13 pages an include the following:

  1. A title slide with introduction of the topic.
  2. A page for each month with:
    1. An image related to your topic
    2. Text explaining the image and its relationship to the topic.
    3. A link to a source for the image and information on the page.

Presentation to Explain Modifying Template

Use this brief presentation to explain how to change the background on a slide and how to add images. It uses the 2022 calendar template as an example.

There are many, many Google Slides calendar templates you can find on the web. Many of these are great, some cost money, some are for 2021 and some have broken links. So, we added an example here that you, on the topic, “Indigenous”, that you can copy into your Google classroom and modify, just to make sure you would have a free template that is available and up to date. It uses a variety of methods of citing sources, from a simple web link in January to APA style in May.

The sample calendar as a PDF is found here.

Make a personalized gift

Janna Jensen, IT specialist from North Dakota, laminates each page in the calendar and binds the pages for a personalized gift from students to parents or other special people in their lives. If you have limited funds, you can just laminate the first and last page for durability, or skip lamination altogether if you don’t have a laminator.

If, like me, you don’t have a binding machine, you can just use a 3-hole punch and twist ties from cables or bags of bread. Ask the lunchroom staff to save some for you.

My first time ever using a laminator.

Make this assignment your own!

I highly recommend encouraging your students to improvise with this assignment. They can find another template on line, insert pages in between months so that each month has a large scale image at top – the possibilities are endless.

Assessment 

Students perform a self-assessment shown below. 

Related Lesson

You may wish to use this lesson to introduce students to the concepts of primary and secondary sources.

Individualized Learning

Advanced students may wish to complete these six online lessons to become more proficient with Google slides.

State Standards: North Dakota

K-5.IAI.9 Organize information using technology and other tools.


TE.K-5.MTL.11 Use technology to gather and share information with a variety of audiences in ways that others can view, use, and assess.

Calendar example with grazing lands

Making a Calendar with PowerPoint

by Janna Jensen

📖 Standard

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.WHST.6-8.6
Use technology, including the Internet, to produce and publish writing and present the relationships between information and ideas clearly and efficiently.

⏰ Time

200 minutes (approximately 5 class periods)

📲 Technology Required

Students will use the Internet to find appropriate images to reflect tasks typically accomplished during a specific month. Students will need access to a device with PowerPoint to create calendar.

📃 Summary

This lesson plan allows students to explore agricultural subjects of interest to create an informational calendar. Students are to pick a field in agricultural and create a calendar outlining the big tasks performed each month. At the end of the project, students perform a self-assessment.

NOTE: While this assignment focuses on agriculture, it could be modified for any subject – science, social studies, literature, and, certainly, art.

Don’t have PowerPoint but you use Google Slides? Check out this lesson.

📚 Lesson

Introduce Assignment to Students

Calendar Assignment

In this assignment, you will be creating a personalized calendar using PowerPoint. Your calendar must consist of a minimum of 13 pages an include the following:

  1. A title slide with introduction of the topic.
  2. A page for each month with:
    1. An image related to your topic
    2. Text explaining the image and its relationship to the topic.

See the Agriculture Calendar for an example.

Video or Presentation on Creating Calendar with PowerPoint

Classroom Presentation

Use this PowerPoint of Instructions on how to create a calendar with PowerPoint. It is a brief 3-5 minute explanation. Instructions are also available in Google Slides format.

Video

This video is only 1:33 and shows using PowerPoint to create a calendar

Students can watch the video above, which has only music, no voice over, so it will be usable even if your students don’t have headphones or your computers don’t have speakers. It is also a good review if students are learning at home or need an extra reminder.

Make a personalized gift

I laminate each page in the calendar and bind the pages for a personalized gift from students to parents or other special people in their lives. If you have limited funds, you can just laminate the first and last page for durability, or skip lamination altogether if you don’t have a laminator.

If you don’t have a binding machine, you can just use a 3-hole punch and twist ties from cables or bags of bread. Ask the lunchroom staff to save some for you.

Assessment

Students perform a self-assessment shown below.

State Standards: North Dakota

K-5.IAI.9 Organize information using technology and other tools.


TE.K-5.MTL.11 Use technology to gather and share information with a variety of audiences in ways that others can view, use, and assess.

Mean, Median and Mode

by Dr. Craig Waddell

📖 Standard

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.6.SP.B.5 Summarize numerical data sets in relation to their context

⏰ Time

30-40 Minutes 

📲 Technology Required

Device with web-browser – Chromebook, laptop or desktop computer, phone or tablet

📃 Summary

Students play a game teaching basic statistics and history. Next, they are given a presentation with problems students solve finding mean, median, mode, range and outliers.

📚Lesson

Play a game teaching basic statistics and Latin American history

Meet the jaguars in AzTech: Meet the Maya

Play AzTech: The story begins. Students who have finished this game can continue on in the series in AzTech: Meet the Maya. Allow students 15-20 minutes to play.

Students can click on a button in the left of their screen to choose the language and play the games in either Spanish or English.

Assess knowledge of Mean, Median and Mode as a class

Use this Google slides presentation to present sets of numbers to the class to use for finding mean, median, mode and range. This is also available as a PowerPoint presentation.

This presentation can also be assigned for students to complete at home, if learning remotely. Slides with answers can be deleted, or left in for students to check their work.

Review as Necessary

If students need a review, they can watch this video on how to find the mean

Finding the Average video

Or, watch the video in Spanish

Encontrando el promedio

ASSESSMENT

You can view your students’ progress on mastering these standards by viewing your teacher reports. AzTech: The Story Begins and AzTech: Meet the Maya links can be found on this reports page. You should have received a password during the Growing Math training.

A second form of assessment is available through this the questions in the presentation.

Related lesson/ Differentiated Instruction

If your students need instruction on computing the mean, try this lesson, Understanding the mean, with skunks. This review can be done with the entire class or assigned to individual students as needed.

What is a statistical question?

📖 Standard

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.6.SP.A.1 Recognize a statistical question as one that anticipates
variability in the data related to the question and accounts
for it in the answers

📲 Technology Required

Computer with projector, for students learning in class. For students learning at home, materials can be accessed on any device with a browser and application to read PDF files or can be printed out and sent home with students.

⏰ Time Required

2 hours (We recommend doing this over two class periods)

📃 Summary

Teachers begin the lesson with a Google slides presentation explaining the requirements for a statistical question. Students complete an assignment identifying whether or not a question qualifies as a statistical question. After class discussion, students complete a second assignment using a small data set shown on a map. In Part 3, students write and answer their own statistical questions using a data set provided, giving an explanation for their answers. Optionally, students can complete a more challenging assignment drawing conclusions from a graph and/or play a game and identify statistical questions.

📚 Lesson

Before you begin, you should have printed out or added to your Google classroom and shared with students the STUDENT handout from the U.S. Census Bureau, “What is a statistical question?” The student version is 11 pages. If you are short on printer paper, you can skip printing page 1. Also, pages 7 and 8 are an optional activity.

You should also print or download the TEACHER version of the Census Bureau handout, “What is a statistical question?” which includes answers to questions in the first two assignments and explanations why each answer was or was not a statistical question.

Introduce students to definition of a statistical question

Begin with the Google Slides presentation, “What is a statistical question?” which breaks down the two components of a statistical question – it must be answered by data and the data must vary.

Students complete assignment on identifying a statistical question

Have students complete Part 1 of the handout “What is a statistical question?” After all students have answered the questions in Part 1, discuss their answers in small groups or as a class.

Students complete Part 2, assignment on identifying a statistical question using real data

Have students complete Part 2 of the handout “What is a statistical question?” After all students have answered the questions in Part 1, discuss their answers in small groups or as a class.

Then, continue with the Google slides presentation and have students complete Part 2 of the student handout from the U.S. Census Bureau (linked above). Have students discuss their answers with one another.

Either correct the answers as a class or collect these to correct yourself. Remember, the teacher handout, linked above, has the correct answers.

We recommend you end the first day’s lesson here and begin the next lesson after students have had the assignments from Part 1 and Part 2 corrected.

Students complete part 3, creating their own statistical questions from data.

Students complete Part 3 of the handout on “What is a statistical question?”

Discuss students’ answers in class. Provide feedback on whether a question really is a statistical question and whether students’ answers to their questions are correct. Allow students time to explain their conclusions.

Optional: Students Complete Part 4

First, use the Google slides presentation, starting on Slide 24, to explain how to read an area chart.

Next, have students complete Part 4 from the student handout, “Drawing conclusions from a graph.”

AzTech: Empiric Empire

Optional: Play Empiric Empire

After students have completed Parts 1 to 3 of the student handout (and, optionally, Part 4), have them play the game Empiric Empire. As an additional optional assignment, ask students to identify statistical questions asked and answered during the game.

Assessment

For assignments in Parts 1 and 2 the teacher version of the handout has correct answers and explanations. For assignments in Parts 3 and 4 of the student handout, examples of correct responses are given but these will vary as students provide their own statistical questions.

For the Empiric Empire game, the teacher reports show student responses to questions. It should be noted that this game does begin with fractions and decimals, which are a prerequisite to statistics.

Google Slides and Math

📖Standards

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.6.SP.B.5.C Giving quantitative measures of center (median and/or mean) and variability (interquartile range and/or mean absolute deviation), as well as describing any overall pattern and any striking deviations from the overall pattern with reference to the context in which the data were gathered.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.6-8.7 Integrate visual information (e.g., in charts, graphs, photographs, videos, or maps) with other information in print and digital texts.

⏰ Time

120 – 180 minutes (You may wish to use 2-3 class periods)

📲 Technology Required

The games used here require a Chromebook, Windows or Mac computers or iPads.

📃 Summary

Students play three games that teach fractions and statistics. Students learn enhanced features of Google slides. They then create a Google slides presentation stating which is their favorite game and why.

📚 Lesson

0. Optional: Google Slides Basics

If students are not familiar with Google Slides, begin with the Google Slides Basics lessons. If students know how to create slides document, select a theme, add text, images, transitions and animations, you can skip this step.

1. Introduce the assignment

Explain to students that they will be playing three different educational games and making a recommendation for future classes. If there is only time to play one of these games, which should the teacher choose. A copy of the assignment is here with both Chromebook and iPad games included. Save to your Google classroom or other system and delete whichever device is not available to your students. If your students have access to both devices, no editing is required. Since their presentation will be made with Google Slides and they want it to be as convincing as possible, they should include images and video to support their points.

2. Play AzTech: The Story Begins

This game teaches fractions and basic statistics, integrated with social studies terms and Latin American history.

Allow students 10 -15 minutes to play the game.

3. Learn about Google Slides Advanced Features

This presentation has links to six videos beyond Google slides basics.

Click on the links on the left side of the screen to learn about:

  • Modifying the theme
  • Inserting video
  • Adding effects to text and images

Allow 10-15 minutes to watch videos and start on their presentations.

4. Play Forgotten Trail or Fish Lake Adventure

Students play Fish Lake Adventure (iPad) a game that teaches fractions or Forgotten Trail (Chromebook), a game that teaches fractions and statistics.

Allow 10-15 minutes to watch videos and continue their presentations.

5. More Google Slides Advanced Features

Continue with more Google slides basics. Watch three videos on the right side of the screen on :

  • Customizing with Word Art
  • Publishing to the web
  • Presentation notes

Allow 10-15 minutes to watch videos and continue their presentations.

6. Play AzTech: Meet the Maya

Allow students the option of playing AzTech: Meet the Maya or continuing one of the two previous games. Meet the Maya continues the game series that teaches fractions and basic statistics, integrated with social studies terms and Latin American history.

Allow 10-15 minutes to play and continue their presentations.

7. Finish !

It’s decision time. Students will select one game to finish for their presentation. Students who finish ahead of the class may play the other games.

Allow 30 minutes to finish the game they have chosen and continue their presentations.

8. Optional (extra credit) Present or publish

Depending on your class and your own objectives, you may want to end this lesson with students either publishing their presentations to the web or presenting in class and trying to convince their classmates that the game they have chosen is the one students should be using to learn next year.

Allow 30 minutes to finish the game they have chosen and continue their presentations.

Google Slides Basic Skills

⏰ Lesson Time

15-20 minutes EACH for two lessons

📲 Technology Required

Device with web-browser – Chromebook, laptop or desktop computer, iPhone or iPad

📃 Summary

There are 6 short videos on Google Slides topics like adding images and choosing a theme. We recommend breaking the first four videos into two separate lessons that students complete during class.

📚 Lesson

These lessons from Google for Education provide a good overview to Google Slides. These are part of the Applied Digital Skills program for which you can register your class and/or yourself or you can just select individual lessons. In our experience, students do better when the lessons are split over 3 or more days.

Day 1: Watch videos 1, 2 and 3

Learn Google Slides while creating a presentation about you. This lesson can be used as is or modified for other topics. The default assignment is for students to create an “All About Me” presentation. The first three videos explain creating a presentation, choosing a theme, inserting a title, adding text and images. You can copy the link and paste it into your Google classroom or other site used for assignments or have students watch these together as a group in class.

For younger students, these three videos may be adequate for your class requirements.

Day 2: Create a Presentation (Bells and Whistles optional)

Watch this five-minute video on Animation and Transition in Google Slides.

Create Your Own Presentation

After watching this 5-minute video, students are ready to create their own presentation. Students can create an “About Me” presentation as suggested in the Google slides or teachers can assign their own preferred topic.

Assessment

Rubric for assessment includes:

  • Student created Google slides presentation
  • Presentation includes the following elements: headers, text and images
  • Presentation uses at least one animation and one slide transition

For younger students, you may wish to eliminate the last requirement.

Related lesson:

Google Apps Basics for Hamsters — As the name implies, a super-basic introduction to Google Drive and Google Docs.

Google Apps Basics for Hamsters

While I have heard many teachers say,

“My students know technology better than I do.”

– Teacher who is often incorrect.

I have often found this not to be the case when it comes to Google apps. I’ve often found that students sometimes don’t want to admit that they don’t know Google apps, assuming that everyone else does.

No hamsters were available so I used my guinea pig

This is the first in a series of lessons for either teachers or students who may not be extremely familiar with Google apps.

For many years, I taught statistics in graduate programs in education, psychology, business and engineering. On a conference planning committee, we had a request that read,

“I would like a session on statistics, but not statistics for dummies. I want a session so easy that a hamster could understand it.”

So, that was the origin of my session, “Statistics for Hamsters.”

Now, maybe you are a Google apps guru and you don’t need any of this. Yay for you. Seriously, yay! Let’s hang out. Still, you may find these resources helpful to share with your students. Just copy the link into your Google classroom, which, of course, you know how to do.

If that is not you, keep reading, and we can still hang out. Especially if you bring coffee.

⏰ Lesson Time

25 minutes

📲 Technology Required

Device with web-browser – Chromebook, laptop or desktop computer, iPhone or iPad

📚 Lessons

Google Drive and Google Doc: Super-Basics

All the Google apps lessons follow a similar format of a series of 15-30 second videos on simple tasks like opening the app, creating a new file and sharing. The lessons are 6-7 minutes but by the time your students get their computers open, log on and start the lesson we estimate around ten minutes of class time.

We have had more success with having students do these activities in class prior to an assignment that will use the app.

This is our favorite basic–basic lesson on Google Drive. From Google for Education, takes six minutes and ends with a quiz where you can test your knowledge.

Introduction to Google docs – The total lesson should take about 7 minutes.

Use what you learned

Follow up this lesson with a simple assignment in Google docs. This provides three prompts students can choose from to answer a question. They will practice creating a doc, copying and pasting from a doc (or, alternatively, saving to their drive), editing a doc and sharing it.

Note to the teacher: You should save the assignment in your Google classroom or other system and be sure to edit it to include your email before assigning to students.

Primary and Secondary Sources with Buffalo Hunting

📖Standards

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RH.6-8.1
Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources.

⏰ Lesson Time

40-60 minutes

📲Technology

If you would like to incorporate the game, students will need access to computers with Spirit Lake installed on them.

In class: If you are teaching in person, you will need a laptop and projector for your slideshow presentation. If you want to include Spirit Lake gameplay, your students will need access to Mac or Windows computers that have Spirit Lake installed, along with their assigned usernames and passwords. Alternatively, Making Camp Dakota can be played on any device.

Remote: Students need internet connections to see your presentation, watch the videos, and view and enter answers on their worksheets.

📃 Summary

Discover why primary sources are important with a story about Dakota buffalo hunting. Have your students watch the following two videos back to back within the downloadable slideshow. These two videos together are great resources for a lesson on the value of primary sources. Included are questions for discussion and critical thinking. Students can do a primary sources scavenger hunt at the Library of Congress (LOC) website. Included in the slides are two curated museum videos about American bison.

Example usable to teach with primary sources: Black and white video of galloping buffalo

📚 Lesson

Present the lesson Buffalo Hunting – Primary and Secondary Sources. The slideshow comes with several examples of primary and secondary sources from the Library of Congress, the Smithsonian museum, and YouTube.

Videos with Primary and Secondary Sources

Two videos about the Dakota buffalo hunters are presented within the presentation for your students to compare and contrast. The first video contains primary sources, and the second is an interpretation of the narration using animation as a secondary source.

If you want to go directly to the two videos included in the Google slides presentation, these are linked below.

Video with Primary Sources
Video with Secondary Sources

Questions included within the Google Slides presentation

These can be discussed together in class or assigned to students to answer individually.

  1. Reflect: Which video did you like better? What did you like about it?
  2. Compare and Contrast: Was there any information you could get from the first video that you did not see in the second?
  3. Explain: Do you think both videos are equally accurate?
  4. Analyze: The first video used photos and paintings. The second video used animation to help tell the story. Both were made about the buffalo hunt. Which source did you think was more trustworthy? Why?
  5. Synthesize: Imagine if you could add some more facts to the video using primary and secondary sources. List one primary source you would add. List one secondary source.

Note: For differentiated instruction, you can have students select one or two of the questions to answer. In more advanced classes, you may wish to discuss how the oil painters could be biased in their representation of their subjects, and how even photos could be biased in the subjects photographers chose to capture.

Virtual Scavenger Hunt

  1. Review the copy and paste functions with your students as learning a key introductory component of online research using the LOC. Enclosed are instructions for students to help walk your students through.
  2. Have students research primary sources at the LOC website. Click the following link for downloadable graphic organizers to distribute to your class. One answer model has been filled out. Students will copy and paste URLs for six primary sources from the LOC site and label three of them.

Game

Spirit Lake is an adventure game with multiplication, division, and geometry practice that plays on Mac or Windows computers. This is tied in with Dakota culture and history. You can have your students play for 20-30 minutes, hunt rabid wolves, and hunt buffalo. Look out for primary and secondary sources!

Don’t have a Mac or Windows computer? Making Camp Dakota can be played on the web and also includes content with buffalo hunting, as well as examples of primary and secondary sources.

Assessment

To check their data, you need your Spirit Lake teacher data reports username and password and your students’ usernames and passwords roster added to your account for Spirit Lake.

Related Lesson

Primary and secondary sources

Primary and Secondary Sources

📖Standards

CCSS.ELA-Literacy.RH.6-8.1
Cite specific textual evidence to support analysis of primary and secondary sources.

⏰ Time Required

40 minutes

📲Technology Required

Students must have access to laptops, desktop computers, or tablets with an internet connection. Students also need a camera for taking pictures of their primary and secondary sources to email to the teachers.

📃 Summary

This history lesson for Grades 5-6 introduces primary and secondary sources as it relates to history.

This 40-minute lesson begins with a 7-10 minute presentation on sources with some formative assessment using manipulatives. Students can learn about secondary sources through the telephone game presentation. Students then delve into two different types of sources: primary and secondary sources. Students can do a KidCitizen online module about Primary Sources. The lesson provides a summative assessment activity where students generate two primary sources and one secondary source about an event in their lives.

📚 Lesson

Introduce the Lesson
The lesson slideshow, Primary and Secondary Sources, begins with the telephone game. Students will gain more understanding of why sources are important to keep track of.

Critical Thinking

Students think, “Why are sources important for studying history?” Question words are included in the slides: “Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How?”

KidCitizen Module

The link for the Primary Sources interactive module is included in the slideshow. Students undergo a self-paced but short online module to understand primary sources. Also, you can click here to explore the module and copy the URL.

Assessment

This activity, which does incorporate writing, is included in the slideshow, but is also written below. Just copy and paste the text into your Google classroom or other LMS.

You are living history! Tell the class about an event that happened in your life using primary and secondary sources. You may change the number of sources they submit to you.

  1. THINK: What resources do you need?
  2. SELECT two primary sources in your home about yourself and one secondary source. Label your sources as Primary Source and Secondary Source. 
  3. Take a picture of your two primary sources and of your secondary source. Email it to your teacher. 
  4. Write a paragraph about your historical life event in your own words using your sources as proof of what happened.

Understanding averages using skunks

📖STANDARDS  

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.6.SP.B.5 Summarize numerical data sets in relation to their context, such as by:

  • CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.6.SP.B.5.A Reporting the number of observations.
  • CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.6.SP.B.5.B Describing the nature of the attribute under investigation, including how it was measured and its units of measurement.

CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.6.SP.B.5.C Giving quantitative measures of center (median and/or mean) and variability (interquartile range and/or mean absolute deviation), as well as describing any overall pattern and any striking deviations from the overall pattern with reference to the context in which the data were gathered.

CCSS.ELA-LITERACY.RH.6-8.7 Integrate visual information (e.g., in charts, graphs, photographs, videos, or maps) with other information in print and digital texts.

LESSON TIME

30 minutes 

📃SUMMARY

In this lesson plan, students will learn how to find the mean and calculate the average and practice finding the average in a game environment. They will learn about skunks and skunk farming through primary source material. Then analyzing historical data, students will calculate the average.

📲TECHNOLOGY REQUIRED

Device with web-browser (Chromebook, laptop or desktop computer)

📚LESSON

Introduce the Assignment

Students can read the assignment, Going on a Skunk Hunt , on their own or teachers can read it to the class and ask any questions (5 minutes)

Through the next three activities – video, reading and assessment –  students will gather clues to unlock the “secret password” for the Skunk Hunt and get to play a short online game. Individual links to the video, reading and assessment components are included below for your reference, but are all included in the Skunk Hunt activity as well for ease of student access. 

The answer to the Skunk Hunt/secret password is: 3harvestnewyork1911

VIDEO

Watch this animated video explaining how to find the average. The video includes an example problem walking through the process, introduces the formula to find the average and also includes vocabulary to explain that mean and average the same thing. (2:00)

READING

Read this short post, Skunks for Fur and Farming , about the intersection of skunks and agriculture, incorporating information from primary sources and historical data. (5-10 minutes)

ASSESSMENT

In this assessment activity, Playing the Skunk Market ,students will use a table with historical data to solve two to four problems asking students to find the average. Two problems require solving for the average and two problems require solving for the average or estimating the average. (10-15 minutes)

ANSWER KEY AVAILABLE HERE. 

RELATED: This lesson plan corresponds with the math standards covered in and refers to content included in Forgotten Trail. Forgotten Trail is recommended as a supplemental resource for this activity. The image at the top of this post is from that game. You can view your students’ progress on mastering these standards by viewing your teacher reports. You can access the Forgotten Trail reports here.