Bubbles the Fish: Labelling skills on Google Slides

I want to tell you about a great lesson that I did today!

Something is fishy...

Last year we hadn't yet moved to GAFE. This was the lesson I did last May:
  • Use Microsoft Powerpoint to label an elephant. 
  • Teacher chooses elephant picture and demonstrates the labelling tool. 
  • Students label the elephant and print
2016: Not terrible, but all the finished pieces of work were exactly the same.

I knew that this lesson needed spicing up for this year. I wanted to teach students how to label an image but wanted to make it feel more enjoyable and less cookie-cutter. Google Slides made this possible.

Labelling on Google Slides!

I learned a fun new trick at the EdTechTeam Summit: On Google Slides, you can add a background image to a slide. The background image cannot be moved or manipulated once added, which is ideal for my age group. This way they can add to an image without accidentally changing or deleting it.

You can use the background button or right click on the slide to change background.

I chose to add a picture of an empty fishtank into the background and acted surprised when we opened it. Where was Bubbles the Fish? My students were surprised by this turn of events and so I suggested we try and find a replacement fish using the built-in Google image search. By allowing them to choose the fish that we labelled, I gave my students agency and control over their own work. It also allowed me to teach them two brand new skills instead of just one! Bonus!

Students had great fun selecting their own fish from the built-in Google search.

Once they had chosen our fish, they then had to start working on our labels. As they all had different background images, they had to change their font and arrow colours to be seen clearly. This lesson was a great learning experience as working with the arrow tool can be fiddly at times. My students took great pride in making their piece of work unique and are looking forward to printing them to show their class teachers.

Colourful fish and colourful labels.

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