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Category: technology

How to Make a Running Banner/Ticker in Slides

Posted in how to, and technology


 I follow A. Colwell on Twitter and loved her running announcement ticker/banner. When I looked up how to do it, I found a great video by The Techy Coach!  A link to Audrey’s website is at the bottom of this post. 

The Techy Coach

Here are instructions I’m making for myself for when I forget how to do this next year!


These instructions are what I wrote down for myself after watching The Techy Coach’s video. It is not exactly like he says to do it  (oops). 

  1. Create a new Google Slides presentation.
  2. Go to the top menu bar: FILE – Page Setup
  3. Change from (Standard) to: CUSTOM
  4. Enter (size) – example: 10 x 1 – I messed w this further in the HTML after mine was finished (width 700, height 125) see HTML below
  5. Type your message
  6. Click TRANSITION button on top menu bar.
  7. Select text box – click ADD ANIMATION
  8.  Add first animation:  FLY IN FROM RIGHT (change to WITH PREVIOUS) – use slider to slow down  (the one above I didn’t do correctly because mine is ‘AFTER previous’) oops 🙂
  9. Add second animation: OUT TO LEFT (change to AFTER PREVIOUS) – use slider to slow down (move it almost all the way to the left)



10. Click PLAY to test your animations

11. Now go to your side view in the left panel and right click- COPY

banner The Techy Coach
from The Techy Coach

12. Paste it about 10 more times (CTRL-V)

banner 10-12 Techy Coach
from the Techy Coach

13. Choose FILE: Publish to the Web and adjust the settings as follows-

This is so it will “automatically launch in kiosk mode” (The Techy Coach).


how tyo


14. I further adjusted the HTML to change the size parameters a bit for mine because it looked weird with the font I chose:

 Embed code: 
<p style=”text-align: center;”><iframe src=”;loop=true&amp;delayms=1000″ width=”700″ height=”125″ frameborder=”0″ allowfullscreen=”allowfullscreen”></iframe></p>

15. Copy the embed code and paste it into your site. Edublogs (add media button), Insert Embed Code, (add <center> first in the HTML), and paste, SAVE

(Google Sites)- Embed from Web button, check Preview, INSERT, resize box, center, adjust within frame, PUBLISH (from the Techy Coach)

Here are the video instructions from The Techy Coach

techy coach

Also check out Audrey Colwell’s (McKinney ISD) Slaughter Elementary Learning Commons page! This is where I saw the ticker idea! 

Martin’s Big Words 2021

Posted in apps, augmented reality, character education, fifth grade, fourth grade, holiday, technology, and third grade

Last week in the Jackson Library, I read excerpts of the Martin’s Big Words book to third and fourth graders. We discussed the power of his peaceful, persuasive words and how Martin’s use of words caused laws to change to promote equal rights in America. They used the augmented reality app, WeirdType to use some of Martin’s words as art.  Check out more about Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and the WeirdType/Pokemon Go app designer below!

martin's big words book
Study Guide

How To

weird type app


Student Work

Our Big Words: MLK 2021 safeshare
Safeshare link to stu work

MLK WeirdType
YouTube link
More Samples
About the app designer
Zach Lieberman
Martin’s Big Words – Rappaport
love conquers weird type

Make A Digital Name Plate

Posted in how to, remote learning, and technology

Thanks to Spark Creativity, Betsy Mork, for her digital name tent idea and Google Drive template! The fourth and fifth graders are loving it during remote learning! Just post in your Google Drive, share it with your students, and share the link to it in your Google Classroom! The kids love it. Check out their creativity! 

STEPS to post this assignment to your Google Classroom:

  1. Download the zip file to your C Drive
  2. Choose the Google Drive Editable Printable file
  3. Click the ENABLE EDITING button
  4. Right click on the assignment link
  5. Choose OPEN LINK
  6. It will ask: Would you like to make a copy? Click the blue MAKE A COPY BUTTON of Hi My Name Is
  7. The template will open. Click on the name of the file and rename it for your class
  8. Go to your Google Classroom
  9. Click the black +CREATE button
  10. Choose ASSIGNMENT
  11. Create the title and type the instructions
  12. Click ADD LINK
  13. Paste the link to the renamed assignment in your Google Drive. If you can’t find the link, click SHARE again on the assignment in Google Drive to get it, copy it, and go to ADD (paperclip) under your assignment description and paste the link. 
  14. When you add the assignment link, be sure to use the drop down menu next to it to choose EACH STUDENT WILL GET A COPY
  15. each stu gets copy
  16. Change the menu settings on the right: 
  17. TOPIC: Is Week (1): August 17-21
  19. STUDENTS ASSIGNED – I don’t assign it to certain stu
  20. AT THE TOP: Click black ASSIGN button to get the pull-down menu
  21. assign menu button
  22. Choose SCHEDULE and set the date you want the students to receive the assignment
  23. schedule
  24. If you change your mind when you want it to be assigned, you can go back to the black ASSIGN button and go to SCHEDULE and change the date.

betsy mork name tent

name tent
name tent
name tent
name plate

Check out Betsy’s awesome blog!

spark creativity blog


Make a ‘Thinglink’ with Google Drawings and Slides

Posted in how to, PD, and technology

Best purchase this summer? Eric Curts’ Control Alt Achieve professional book! In part 27, he shows how to make Googlink Interactive Images. I did this incorrectly several times before producing something acceptable so I will share some tips! I made an ‘about me‘ one for our new principal and new staff members. 

Eric Curts' CTRL ALT ACHIEVE book

about me Googlink
Click to view
  1. Go to your drive and NEW + (on the right)- go to MORE and locate Google Drawings. I tried to find Drawings in the 9 dot menu on the right and didn’t see it there. goo drawings2. Open drawings and begin building your picture. Be sure to locate copyright-free pictures from a reputable source. I like to use Pixabay. Insert pictures by using the toolbar menu: INSERT: image. You can add pictures-on-pictures. Plan out everything you want to add. I’m making an ‘about me’ so I added the Twitter icon, blog icon, etc. 
  2. When finished, Go to FILE – download – as JPG
  3. Open a new blank Google Slide document
  4. IMPORTANT: Go to insert BACKGROUND and find your jpg-insert img as bckgnd drawingsDo not, do not just insert the picture – the sizing will be all wrong. I tried it.  It will also just move around when anyone tries to click on anything. It is a mess.
  5. Now find an image you want to link. Go to INSERT text box and make it transparent: transparent text box
  6. Right click and choose INSERT – LINK. Paste the link you want there.
  7. paste link for googlink
  8. Click on this symbol to make the border color of the text box transparent. make border of text box transparentI forgot to do this at first and you could see the little boxes around the symbols: text boxes show- ick!Nooooooooo – so make them transparent! You can go back and do this at the very end if you want. 
  9. IMPORTANT: If you are linking to a file in Google Drive, be sure to share it correctly first. I made mine public. Click on the blue words to change with whom you share.sharing settings9. Be sure to adjust the sharing settings of EVERYTHING you share: other Google documents, photos, audio files, etc.
  10. For example, I made this Google Drawing to go in one of the links. After you create it in Drawings, click ‘Download’ and choose as ‘JPG’.  Upload this JPG to your Google Drive. 
  11. ADJUST the sharing settings of this JPG to ‘public’ or ‘only ppl w the link’
  12. updated about me
  13. Note: you can type on the Google Slide to provide instructions if you need to. I added the ‘Click to find out about me.’ 
  14. Now here’s where Eric Curts really helped me out:
    1. This allows it to open in full screen instead of the editing window.
    2. To do this: Click SHARE again and highlight the ‘edit’ part at the end of the line:edit link
    3.  Now change that to ‘preview’
      preview link
    4. Done!  Eric reminds us that when you send someone the link, all of your hotspots will be ready to be clicked. (p. 85, Control Alt Achieve, Eric Curts, Dave Burgess Consulting, 2020)
    5. Double check: Did you share: docs, photos, audio, Google Drawings linked to the Google Slide?  Did you share the Google Slide? Did you change the end of the link to preview or preview/template?

Same tip from Tony Vincent, but added benefit if you want a TEMPLATE:

tony vincent make a template



Context Clues with the Gingerbread Man

Posted in picture book lesson, second grade, and technology

Before the break second graders came to the Jackson Library to learn more about context clues. They used the words and pictures in The Gingerbread Man Loose on the Fire Truck to determine the meaning of unknown words. At the computer station, the kids learned more about the parts of a fire truck on Sparky‘s site and we listened to videos and songs which reminded us how to call 911 and to get outside if there is a fire. 


Gingerbread Man loose on the fire truck lessonsparky

Fire Truck Song          Fire Safety HK         Get Outside

Mr. 7 Yea
Firefighter read aloud by Mr. 7 Yea


Seesaw Ambassador

Posted in Seesaw, and technology

After receiving an invitation from Seesaw, I completed the training course to be a Seesaw Ambassador. Shawne Briggs, Sheffield Primary librarian, told me how useful it is in the library and she talked about how she infused it into all of her lessons. I started using it for lessons at the beginning of the school year and it has enriched our learning tenfold! The kids love it and I like how everything is in one place for me to approve. It has caused some shy kids to ‘come out of their shell’ and share! I can’t wait to find out more about this amazing tool and to share it with the staff via our Technology Committee meetings!

Seesaw ambassador badge
Dec. 2019


Character Traits with Seesaw

Posted in fourth grade, picture book lesson, reading skills, technology, and writing

Last week in the Jackson Library, fourth grade analyzed the actions, dialogue, and personalities of the characters in Helen Lester’s Me First! to pinpoint descriptive character traits of the main characters. They used a Seesaw bubble map I created and chose between Pinkerton the pig or the Sand Witch templates.

Me First character maps

Me First!

Me First review
Publisher’s Weekly Review

ME-FIRST-long questions



MeFirst Reader’s Theater

Helen Lester Unit

Inferences with Abdul Gasazi

Posted in fifth grade, picture book lesson, and technology

This week in the Jackson Library, fifth graders used text evidence to support their inferences after reading The Garden of Abdul Gasazi. I created a Seesaw template for them to use and they worked in pairs to match the text evidence to the inference in the story. We discussed the author’s use of foreshadowing and the items in the Anchorage District text evidence chart below. 

5th grade lesson Garden of Abdul

inferences and evidence


Text Evidence Chart from Anchorage District

Text Dependent Questions Answers
Reread page 398. What evidence from the text can you cite to defend the idea that Alan takes pet-sitting Fritz seriously? He won’t let Fritz out of his sightHe keeps Fritz from chewing furniture
Reread the last sentence on page 398 when Alan hides his hat under his shirt. This is an example of foreshadowing. Where in the story does Alan’s hat reoccur?

Pg 408- the duck steals Alan’s hat

Pg 412- Fritz has the hat when he is waiting for Alan on the porch

Reread page 400. Based on the first paragraph, how can you tell that Alan has no control over Fritz?

Fritz bites Alan

Frtiz drags him out of the houseFritz leads him across the bridge

On page 400, the author uses all capital letters on the sign. Why do you think the author did this? How would the mood be different if the author did not do this? Capital letters often denote yelling or intense feelings or emotions.
Chris Van Allsburg wants the reader to notice that Fritz is out of control. What words or phrases on page 400 does the author use to portray Fritz in this light?

Fritz has to be dragged out of the house

Fritz gives a tremendous tugFritz snaps out of his collar

Fritz bolts straight ahead

How is the author using the illustrations and word choice to create suspense in this story?  (Pg. 402)

Gasazi’s house is dark and castle-like

Lots of shadows used

Capital letters used

The pages all end on a cliffhanger or leading sentence

In the second paragraph, Gasazi states that he “detests” dogs. Using contextual clues what do you think “detest” means?  (Pg. 406)

Gasazi lists all the bad things that dogs doHe uses all capital letters on his warning sign


Why is Alan concerned that Mr. Gasazi might have captured Fritz?  (Pg. 400)

The threatening sign

Alan’s knowledge of Fritz’s misbehaviorThe knowledge that Fritz had gone into the forbidden area

Reread pages 404-405. What details does that author use to make Mr. Gasazi seem frightening and mysterious?

The house is dark and largeThe door opens before Alan knocks

Mr. Gasazi stands in the shadows

Reread pages 400-406. How does the author make sure that the reader knows that Gasazi  really does not like dogs?

Gasazi’s voice sounds like a growl

The author writes Gasazi saying “I turn them into ducks!”  in capital letters.

He states that he “detests dogs”

The threatening sign

At the beginning of the story we learn that Alan takes pet sitting seriously. What other evidence from the story portrays Alan as a responsible person. Cite evidence from the text to support your answer.

He is politeHe follows Fritz into the garden although he is scared

He admits to Ms Hester that he lost Fritz

Reread page 408. What textual clues are there that lead you to believe that Alan really believe Fritz turns into a duck?

Alan begs Gasazi to turn Fritz back into a dog (406)

Alan tells the duck that he “hasn’t changed much” after the duck bites him (408)

The duck steals Alan’s hat- a favorite thing of Fritz’s (408)

Is Ms. Hester angry at Alan? Use clues from the text and illustrations to support your position. (Pg. 410)

Ms Hester tries to hide a smile

She reassures Alan that Gasazi was just playing tricks

The illustrations depict Ms Hester as comforting Alan

Why do you think that Chris Van Allsburg choose to end the story with Fritz having Alan’s hat?  (Pg. 412) To add to the mystery of the story; ties into the beginning of the story and the foreshadowing of the hat


Garden of Abdul Gasazi- After the Story Questions

  • Imagine that Alan goes back to talk to Mr. Gasazi about the incident. How will the magician react? Will they become friends? Describe their continuing adventures in writing.
  • Imagine that Fritz didn’t come back to Miss Hester’s house. What would Alan have done? Or imagine that Fritz did come back but he remained a duck. How would Alan have explained that to Miss Hester?


Garden of Abdul Gasazi Safeshare video 

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