Adding extra things to spice up your choice boards is definitely not necessary. In fact, I don’t do it every time a create one because it can be time consuming.There is no need to worry if you haven’t added Bitmojis, GiF’s or other things to your boards. Sometimes I feel like adding a little fun since right now I am not seeing my students, I am just creating asynchronous lessons.
In my recent board I added my dog Macondo as a helper to give instructions to my kinder and first grade students. It was fun to put him on my boards!Below I am sharing the steps I followed. I divided them into 3 parts hoping to make it easier for you to follow.
You will need to:
Choose a picture of your pet or any other picture of an animal.
Download the app “My Talking Pet.” There is a free trial period.
Open the app and upload the picture.
Once the picture is uploaded, the app will show you some dots to mark the eyes, mouth, and ears (see picture).
Add the voice (Once you have added the voice, that app will ask you for different options to save it. I downloaded mine to my computer).
Upload the video to the Unscreen.com website. This will remove the background and the sound. Save this video because you will need it later!
Use the video you downloaded from “My Talking Pet” and upload it to the online audio converter siteto extract the audio. Make sure to download the audio as mp3.
Save the audio file to your Google Drive and rename it.
Make sure that you set the audio file link to the Google setting “anyone with the link can view” so it is accessible for everyone when they open your choice board.
Insert the link to your audio file directly onto your Google Slides.
Lastly, add the video you downloaded from the Unscreen.com website.
Open Google Slides in “presentation mode” and enjoy seeing your pet or animal give instructions to your students.
In case you are still wondering how to add some fun to your choice boards, a gif of yourself can never go wrong!
I am now creating videos, making choice boards, and asynchronous lessons while the school is slowly transitioning to in-person classes. I know! It sounds like a backwards plan, but I think it is the best the school can do right now to support students who are in the classroom and those who continue with home learning.
That said, adding GIF’s to my choice boards has been something my younger students love seeing.
Here are the steps:
Make a short video of yourself.
Upload it to the Unscreen.com website to remove the background. It will only allow 6 seconds. Download the short gif to your computer (gif = graphics interchange format).
Create a background with Canva. You can use animated images. Educators can use Canva for free!
Upload your gif to Canva and place it on the background you created.
Download it again from Canva as a gif.
Place it on your choice boards and have fun!
I am sure there are other faster ways to do this, but this works great for me. If you know of another way to do it, please share it with us all in the comments.
I recently shared onInstagram a template of a tic-tac-toe game I created to play during my virtual classes. I have gotten requests from different teachers who want this template and since I am all about saving teacher friends’ time, I decided to create more templates and share them here on my blog.
I have been seeing my students in small groups. In order to play the game virtually, I clicked on the “rename” part of Zoom and added either the letter “O” or “X” to divide them into teams. My students don’t have access to changing their names on Zoom because that’s how it was set up at the school where I teach, but if your students can do it themselves, that will save you some time. Since playing this game will require you to move the pieces, it can’t be played in presentation mode.
I used this game to ask questions about stories we have been reading in class. Once the students responded to the question, they could tell me a number for me to move the piece for them. It was simple, and the students seemed to have fun. I played this game remotely, but it can still be used in the classroom. Click HERE to download the slides to have fun in your classes! Once you click on the link, it will prompt you to make a copy of the document.
I also had fun learning the various names for this game in different Spanish speaking countries:
Over the summer I saw so many teachers sharing their Bitmoji classrooms that I had to give it a try. Of course, this is something that is not necessary, but I thought it would be fun to make one. Sometimes it’s these little unnecessary touches that make my work fun!
How Can You Use Bitmoji Classrooms?
First, I think it adds some fun to your virtual class. Even if you are back in the classroom, it will be fun for your students to see. Bitmoji classrooms can be used as:
A way to display your schedule.
A way to greet your classes.
A way to place links you can use during your lesson.
As a choice board for students to use and explore on their own
And many more!
There are so many tutorials on YouTube that it doesn’t make sense for me to recreate the wheel. Here is one video that I think explains the process in simple steps:
Don’t have time to watch the video? Don’t worry! I’ve got you covered. I took some screenshots of the process I went through while creating my virtual classroom;
I opened Google Slides:
I clicked on “Background” to add my first image:
I chose “Insert background image” and clicked on “Choose image”:
I clicked on “Google image search” because I was looking for images on Google. You can also click on any of the other options if you are uploading your images from somewhere else:
In this case, I wanted to look for an image of the “floor and wall background together.” I made sure to search for a picture of a transparent background or a png image:
I clicked on the picture that I liked and hit “Insert”:
I really liked the white walls and colorful floors in this picture!
Next, it was time to add more items to my classroom! It didn’t need to add more background images. (If I’d done that, it would have replaced the ones I already had). I just needed to click on “Insert image” and then choose where I was going to upload it from. (Note that if you don’t have any images yet, you can do a web search. Just remember that you need to look for images with transparent background or png images.):
Next I went “shopping” for a whiteboard:
I found the one I liked, clicked on it, and inserted it into my slide:
My classroom has a whiteboard now! Just follow the same steps to add more exciting things to your classroom.
How to Add a Bitmoji?
You will need to download the Bitmoji chrome extension to your computer and design your own little persona. Once you are ready, on your Google slide, click on the Bitmoji extension and search in the space bar how you want your Bitmoji to look.
Don’t’ have time to create a Bitmoji classroom? Feel free to click on this image, drag it to your computer desktop, open Google Slides, and add this image as a background. Now you are ready to add your own Bitmoji!
I am excited about how Google Slides™, Seesaw, and Boom cards are student-friendly and are so flexible to make different activities interactive. I know many teachers use my song “¿Cuántas manzanas hay?, especially around the fall season. Last year I created some printable resources to go along with this song, and I realized that some of you might not be able to use them due to our current situation, but no problem! I have you covered! I created a freebie using these three platforms and I hope you and your students enjoy them!
If you need to learn how to use Seesaw, I suggest you visit their website where you will be able to find tutorials.
Last, but not least, Google Slides™ are always great to use, especially if you decide to do this activity as a whole group. I find it hard to assign activities through Google Slides™ because they are not friendly for students in second grade and younger.
I hope you have a lot of fun trying all the activities on these three platforms. Don’t forget to let me know how it goes!
Seesaw is one of the most valuable teaching tools I have used during Distance Teaching. I have been using it for over three years, but I’d always limited myself to asking students to retell stories or to send them messages with links they would need during class. I have also used Seesaw as a backup plan for third grade and up when I had a sub that didn’t know Spanish. Seesaw is a wonderful portfolio that allows students to see their progress. It has also been a tool that has replaced paper assessments (Yay for the trees!). So I realized that I really needed to learn more about Seesaw during Distance Teaching. I feel that I now have created a bank of resources that I can use as emergency lessons or reuse if we continue with online teaching.
If you want to learn more about Seesaw, they have been offering different types of professional development (PD) and also have a lot of information on their website.
These are two activities that I created during Distance Teaching. Feel free to copy them to your library and make the changes you need to make them work for your students. You will need to have access to a premium Seesaw account to make changes to it. If your school is using Seesaw, you likely already have access to it. If you or your school have a free account, you can assign it to your students as is.
The first activity is based on the story “La vaca que decía oink”*** by Bernard Most. I read this story to my kinder and first grade students and used this activity as a way to review key vocabulary.
I hope you and your students enjoy these activities!
¡Hola! I am Carolina, a Colombian elementary Spanish teacher based in Austin, Texas. Fun for Spanish Teachers is the result of my passion for teaching Spanish to children and my desire to inspire collaboration and creativity in a vibrant teaching and learning community. It’s the perfect stop if you are looking for songs, games, teaching tips, stories, and fun for your classes.