Quote of the Month

When love and skill work together, expect a miracle. John Ruskin

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Quick As A Wink

The man is a marvel of ingenuity creating free applications for educators to use.  According to Richard Byrne, educator, presenter, author and blogger at Free Technology for Teachers in a post dated March 3, 2014, Russel Tarr, Head of History at the International School of Toulouse, France and also host of Active History, has a new item at ClassTools.net.  I have previously talked about BrainyBox, SMS Generator! and Mission Mapquest.  His latest creation is called QwikSlides.

As soon as you access the home page for this multimedia presentation creation tool, you can see that Russel Tarr has used the application itself to provide instructions for use.  Beginning with an introductory slide, the subsequent nine provide information about generating your own program.  Along the top of the page are seven icons which offer the following:

  • go back one or more slides
  • select a font
  • select a color for the background 
  • save your presentation
  • edit your presentation 
  • the HTML embed code and
  • go forward one or more slides (arrow on the far right).

Begin creating your presentation by selecting the pencil (edit) icon at the top of the page.  The new window shows ten lines Russel Tar typed for his explanation of this application.  You need to erase his lines and add your own.  Each line you type is a separate slide.

If your text extends to the next line, a new slide will not be created unless you hit the enter key.  Images and videos get their own slide.  Simply place the URL for either on a line.  Here is the beginning of a presentation I am creating followed by images of the first four slides.  

In order to see your presentation you need to click on Submit.  To add more slides or change any, click on the pencil icon again.  

The background remains the same for all of the created presentations but the color can be changed.  There are thirty-six choices. (1)  The font is always white.  When your presentation is complete click on the save icon (floppy disk).   You will be prompted to provide a password so you can edit your work later. (2)  You have to save your work before you can get the embed code.

If you are viewing this presentation on a device where you swipe the screen, that function is possible with this application.   You can move through the presentation by using the arrows or clicking on the dots below to scroll quickly to a particular slide.  When you choose the gear icon, your options are to get the URL link or HTML embed code, the QR code or download the web shortcut.

  My presentation is embedded below along with the QR code.  

You could not ask for a more user-friendly tool for creating a multimedia presentation.  As with other items at Classtools.net QwikSlide requires no registration allowing for use by younger students.  The possibilities for QwikSlide presentations are numerous; providing step-by-step instructions, gathering book trailers for favorite books, highlighting a single trailer with a list of reasons you like the book or the trailer, a day-in-the-life writing prompt, or a list of books by a special author or illustrator.  The best part is once you have all the items, text, videos and images, it can be completed in mere minutes.  Thank you Russel Tarr.

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