The uptake of Google tools in homes, classrooms and workplaces across the world has been huge over recent weeks, and this week we bring back Ruairi to give us an expert tutorial of Google Slides. This week is the third time Ruari has featured in our videos, meaning he has (technically) starred in a trilogy. Kudos!
How we work and learn has changed a lot over recent months, and lecture theatres and classrooms across the world are temporarily ditching busy corridors and scribbled whiteboards for something a little more digital. Google Classroom has been a major winner here, and we’ve previously highlighted how Google’s range of tools can make remote life a lot easier – and that’s true whether you are working from home, meeting with colleagues or connecting with family & friends.
Yes, Google Slides is becoming extremely popular – but our Ruairi was miles ahead of the trend, discovering this neat tool a few months ahead of the coronavirus outbreak.
Some of the best things are discovered by accident, and Ruairi stumbled across Google Slides on one of his regular gaming sessions. The rest is history, and now our resident expert is treating us to a professional tutorial.
Google Slides: Getting Started
1. Google Slides can be accessed using the standard Google Drive interface. Clicking on drive will present a number of options in a drop-down menu. When this appears, click Google Slides. Alternatively, hit the Google Apps menu on the top right of the screen (the ‘9 circles menu’) and access Google Slides this way.
2. After taking this first step, users will be presented with a template gallery – an extremely handy feature that is particularly useful for those delivering presentations with a short deadline. These come in a range of designs and formats – some more formal, some more casual. You can, of course, select a blank template and work from there. For the purposes of our tutorial, we’re picking a blank template.
Customise Your Slides
3. Once you’ve selected a blank template, you’ll see a menu along the right hand side of your screen offering a variety of themes. These include a range of styles, colours and fonts, and it’s a great opportunity to add some character to your presentation. In our tutorial, we’re creating a presentation with three slides. Subject matter: Harry Potter. Why not?
4. To add a new slide, drag your cursor to the top left hand corner of the screen. Underneath the Slides Home icon is a little ‘+’ button. Hit this button a new, blank slide will appear immediately below the title slide you started with. We’re going to name this slide ‘Hagrid’ – because he’s everyones’ favourite Harry Potter character, right?
5. Information in presentations is often separated in little bullet points, and Google Slides is no different. You can even personalise the style of bullet point you’d like to go for in a small setting button on the top right – and that looks the same in Google docs and other Google Apps. Like many text editors, you are also free to make a number of stylistic choices, including bolding, underlining and italicising.
Media, Transitions and Changing View
6. Next step, we take a little look at the awesome Explore feature. This can be accessed on the bottom right hand corner of the interface, and collates your slides into designs that it thinks looks better. We find that Google often has a strong judgement here. If none of these designs tickle your fancy, Google Slides offers a neat feature which allows you to upload media from a range of devices, meaning you can select whatever image or video you like. You can even upload straight from search, reducing any time potentially spent browsing for images. Don’t panic – all of these images are resizable, as Ruairi demonstrates!
7. Once you’ve got your media selected and inserted in your slide, it’s time to think about transitions – “the movement between each slide”, as defined by Damson’s own Fintan Murphy. There’s a range of options here around the motion of your transition, and you can select various settings like transition speed, flip direction and so on. Ruairi’s favourite transition speed? One second. You can also add awesome animations, making your media fly in, fly out and more.
8. Google Slides is a really accessible tool, and is certainly one of the most user-friendly presentation apps out there. Google even allows you to amend your view of the interface, letting you view the presentation from the perspective of your audience. Please note that this view is for viewing, and not editing!
Our best piece of advice around getting your or your kids into Google Slides is to take a step back, relax and give it a bit of a try yourself. For kids, we recommend trying out your presentations – pick a subject you like to make things easier. We love Ruairi’s presentation on giant pandas – but feel free to present on whatever you like!
More About Damson Cloud
That wraps things up for this week’s blog, and we’d like to send out a massive thank you to guest star Ruairi for his expert insights. For those who are new to remote working, don’t panic: we’ve put out lots of advice on getting the practice right for you, whether that’s around building a productive remote working team, getting your video conference etiquette right or a guide to using Google Meet. Check them out, and as ever – leave us your feedback in the comments.
As a longstanding member of the Google Cloud Partner program, Damson Cloud specialise in bringing people and ideas together through new ways of working. We champion change management and digital transformation using some of the internet’s most trusted solutions, including Google Workspace, Happeo and Jamboard. To find out more about our services, check out our library of tutorial videos or our blog.