Tuesday, January 26, 2016

Google Slides: Choose Your Own Adventure Style

Google Slides is so much more than a presentation tool!  One very fun use for Google Slides, is to have students create a choose your own adventure story.  You can easily link buttons or words on a slide and have them take you to a different slide when you click them.  This will allow the reader of the story to choose their next move and be taken to a specific slide based on that choice.  Imagine the possibilities for this!  There is so much story mapping and critical thinking involved in building a choose your own adventure type story.  Your students will learn, be challenged, and have a ton of fun along the way!

Depending on the age of your students, you may want to leave the slide size as is, or perhaps make it an 8.5 x 11 sized page for more advanced writers who need more space for text.  To see how you can change the default slide size, check out my Google Slides: More Than a Presentation Tool post.

It is easy to hyperlink text or shapes to take you to a certain slide in the slide deck.

Highlight the text you'd like to link and click on the link icon in the toolbar across the top.  If you don't see the link icon across the top, you may have to click the "More" button to find it.

To link a shape, select the shape that you'd like to link and then click on the link icon across the top.  Again, if the link icon doesn't show, you may have to click the "more" button to find it.

When you click the link icon, you'll see a "Slides in this presentation" option.  You can then pick which slide this text or shape should link to.  Once you choose the slide you'd like to link to, you can click "Apply".

Tip: If you choose a slide layout that includes a 'title' text box, the title will appear next to the slide number in this list.  This might be helpful to ensure you are linking the correct slide.  If you do NOT want the title to show on the slide itself, you can make the text the same color as the background so it cannot be seen on the slide, but the name will still show in this list.

Students can be as creative as they'd like to be as they build their stories.  Once they are finished, the stories can be shared with parents and peers.  Everyone can load up the slide decks and get ready to choose their own adventure!  (Be sure the 'reader' clicks "Present" to launch the slideshow.  The links will work better this way!)

Note:  It is helpful - but not necessary - to make your slides for this presentation in three layers.

Layer 1 (back):  Your story text.

Layer 2 (middle):  The middle layer should be a big rectangle that covers the entire slide.  It should be made to be translucent so you can see through it.  Link this big rectangle to the same slide you put it on.  You do this to prevent any stray clicks from accidentally advancing to the next slide.  There is a video here that explains this process in more detail.

Layer 3 (top):  Then the top layer is your text box or shapes that contain your options.

The purpose of the big transparent rectangle in the middle is to prevent the "reader" from accidentally advancing the slide.  When you are in presentation mode, clicking on the slide will advance you to the next slide.  By adding this transparent layer linked to the same slide, if the "reader" clicks anywhere but on the buttons you give them, it will just stay on that slide.  


  1. I would also suggest using LucidPress to create a flowchart on Google Docs prior to creating the slides.

  2. My hyperlinks don't work in presentation mode for my students. Do you know why?


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