My district has had a long and tumultuous relationship with SMART Notebook, and this year it was announced it was going to be discontinued for our teachers, so as you can imagine, everything hit the fan when people realized they’d have to convert their work into another medium.
I was totally in favor of it; it was currently not doing what we needed as our kids were going 1:1 with touch screen laptops. Aside from the primary grades, those beautiful (expensive) SMART Boards were just being used as fancy anchor charts. They also were used as a way to keep the teacher chained to the front of the room as they wrote notes on the board (wait, I thought we all decided that was boring?).
There are two things I think SMART Notebook did better than PowerPoint that I was sad about: the infinite cloner and the cute little timers and dice you could use on the screen. Having a large time the kids would see is an excellent little tool! But alas…
Then I did a BreakoutEdu (awesomesauce) and one of the video links was to a 45 minute timer to display on the board from YouTube. I’ve used a timer tool in Google before, but this was cool. It played music as it counted down, and the music got faster as the time ran out!
Wait a minute. Is it possible that if there’s this one 45-minute countdown video on YouTube, that there are others for other time denominations out there?
Yes, yes there are.
You can certainly do a quick search on your own, but I made a playlist of a few frequently used timer videos of all lengths of time:
So the next logical thought becomes- so if my timers are on YouTube videos, and I can easily embed a YouTube video right onto a PowerPoint slide (minus -1 point for SMART Notebook), couldn’t I embed my timers into the slides I already have created for seamless use in the classroom?
The above video is a geeky little explanation I made, but the short version is: under the “Insert” Tab, you choose “Video” and “Online Video.” That brings up a search bar where you can search anything you want. Nifty, huh? You can format or resize a video just as you could in a picture so you can combine a timer with any other information you could want on the board.
Here’s an example:
(On the screen the video is interactive, I just took a screenshot of it)
Do you have any other resources on helping kids manage their time in a classroom? I’d love to hear!
Thanks for coming to the party!