By Elly Niedzviecki
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Whatever your topic or assignment is, you want to get your message across as clearly as possible and keep it from getting too dull. This article will help you with video presentations, google slides, and powerpoints - just some things to help you easily produce a nice presentation.
Things to think about when writing text on your google slides/PowerPoint is to make sure the words are easily readable, not using super bright colours, and use colours that contrast with your background. It is key to use point form to share facts and information or if you must, a short paragraph. We don't need all the information all at once: clear and concise, PLEASE. Think about adding enough images to help with explanations and to keep your presentation interesting. Another simple way to make eye-pleasing, graphic slides is to use themes. Most of the themes provided directly are very simple. If you use an outside source for themes and download/turn them into google docs, they tend to be much nicer and more formatted (slidescarnival and slidesgo have good options). Google Slides also lets you crop images and insert youtube videos straight into your slides (no link!) that start playing automatically when you are presenting.
Google Slides, Powerpoint, or Prezi? I find Google Slides the easiest to use. It's not complicated to upload into Google Classroom and access. With both PowerPoint and Slides inserting images and videos is nice and straightforward. Prezi is, I think, the most tedious to use, but if you're willing to spend the time and make an account (make sure you use the free student one unless you want to pay), Prezi has some cool templates that become a sort of interactive video.
For videos or even just audio recordings, I have had such a hard time finding free video editors that have all the things you need and let you export (not all file types though) for free and aren’t iMovie/only compatible with Apple. FilmoraGo (X). Honestly works just as well as any not-free editor (except your video gets watermarked when you export, just like all the other free editors). Pretty much has everything and is super easy to use. Inshot also works well, especially if you're editing from a phone. But as far as I can tell, you cannot record straight from the app. I tried it out, and you upload photos/videos/audio from your gallery etc, then you can crop, write on top and edit them. Inshot also has free music and sound effects available. The final software that I recommend is called Adobe Spark. It’s a TDSB approved program and allows you to make an account for free using your student information. It's extremely easy to use, you can collaborate with other people and upload directly to your google drive, it comes with images, themes and music as well as let’s you take your own voice recordings and photos or upload them, as well as videos. You basically make a slideshow and it turns it into a nice video for you (when you play, it adds animations to the text that makes it look a lot more complicated than it actually was). You can’t crop or edit the voice recordings and videos but if that isn't too big of an issue, Adobe Spark is probably the way to go. You can also make a bunch of other media from your spark account like collages and webpages.