Common Sense

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Best Classroom Tools for Presentations and Slideshows

Many students dread presenting or struggle to structure and communicate their ideas successfully. These interactive presentation and slideshow apps and websites give them tools to make their work fun, engaging, and interesting. Students can create screencasts to teach a topic to the class, use a design tool to craft sleek graphics, or record entertaining videos and animations. Whether it's for practice or to reach an authentic audience, students can demonstrate their learning and gain valuable skills for college and career. There are also some great options for teachers to create and present lessons with live whiteboard instruction or slick multimedia and interactive elements like videos or embedded assessments. 

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Slideshow and Lesson Delivery Tools

Common Sense Selection

Nearpod

Engage and assess students with media, videos, and interactive slides

Bottom line: This is a great tool with a vast content library, and the teacher- or student-paced learning can unlock the potential of 1-to-1 environments.

Common Sense Selection

Buncee

Easy-to-use slideshow tool offers customization, promotes creativity

Bottom line: With the right guidance, the abundance of design features make creating dynamic presentations a breeze for all students.

LessonUp

Flexible interactive presentation tool engages kids at school and home

Bottom line: It's great for creating unique interactive lessons customized for every learner, but it might not be accessible for every student.

Common Sense Selection

Pear Deck

Interactive slideshows offer a variety of ways to engage and assess

Bottom line: This is an appealing platform that can really ramp up engagement around formative assessment.

Wooclap

Versatile polling/presentation tool boasts great question variety

Bottom line: This tool supports student-centered teaching by pushing real-time participation/feedback beyond simple polls and multiple-choice questions.

ClassFlow

Robust lesson creation and delivery tool helps with assessment

Bottom line: In the hands of a determined teacher, this platform's useful suite of tools can support learning experiences that move from instruction to assessment and back.

Keynote

Simple, elegant tool for creating presentations on mobile devices

Bottom line: Provides a solid mobile version of Apple's presentation app.

Prezi

Multimedia presentation tool features useful templates and 3D zoom

Bottom line: With its zoom in and out capabilities, Prezi helps teachers and students go beyond traditional slideshows to put important content front and center.

Haiku Deck

Limited text and high-impact visuals help focus presentations

Bottom line: Haiku Deck doesn't teach the essentials of good presentations, but it's great for users who already know the basics.

Screencasting Tools

Loom

Create, present, and assess with effortless interactive screencasts

Bottom line: This intuitive tool is excellent for recording and responding to screencasts of any length.

Screencast-O-Matic

Create and edit sophisticated screencasts without breaking the bank

Bottom line: This is the most flexible screencasting tool, but it requires patience -- and perhaps a subscription -- to unlock all of its possibilities.

Common Sense Selection

Screencastify

Easy screen-recording tool facilitates outside-the-box instruction

Bottom line: This is an instructional tool that could reinvent classroom workflow, especially for classrooms in the Google ecosystem.

VEED

Create and edit high-quality screencasts and videos in record time

Bottom line: This platform is full of features that blend video creation and screencasting, helping teachers expand and differentiate their lessons.

Vmaker

Simple, easy screencast creator with room to grow

Bottom line: This is a competitive entrant into the screencasting field and leans into ease-of-use and fewer restrictions vs. tons of features.

Shadow Puppet Edu

Resource-rich video slideshow maker a gem for a variety of classrooms

Bottom line: Easy-to-use free tool is a must-have for elementary classrooms; just keep an eye on sharing and privacy.

TouchCast Studio

Cool tool takes videos to the next level

Bottom line: It's a creative tool for teachers to make interactive video content and for students to present information, but teachers should monitor use.

Whiteboard Tools

Common Sense Selection

Explain Everything

Classic presentation tool continues to evolve

Bottom line: It strikes the a great balance of features -- offering options without going overboard -- and is worth considering if you can spring for the paid version.

Miro

Interactive whiteboard lets users brainstorm, organize, and collaborate

Bottom line: This versatile, beautiful platform invites collaboration, creation, and presentation and is useful for everything from workflow tasks to creative expression.

Art and Design Tools

Canva

Create snazzy designs in seconds with flexible, cloud-based tool

Bottom line: With stable internet access and enough time to get started, this is a flexible, accessible way to create beautiful designs in your classroom.

Sway

Create dynamic visual presentations on flexible storytelling platform

Bottom line: A seamless transition from design to presentation makes Sway a great fit for presenting carefully curated content.

Adobe Spark

Super-flexible design tool for crafting fab images, videos, and sites

Bottom line: This one-stop shop for creating sleek graphics, web stories, and animated videos is incredibly easy to use and challenges students to think critically about visual presentation.

Common Sense Selection

Sutori

Build timelines, embed media with cool storytelling tool

Bottom line: With a super-simple design and tons of flexible features, this is an appealing and intuitive way for teachers and students to organize and share class content.

Animoto

Create snazzy video slideshows with simple, flexible features

Bottom line: Slick music videos and slideshows are easy to make, but students need more controls to personalize them.

Artsteps

Immersive virtual exhibit tool is attractive and versatile but fussy

Bottom line: For teachers and students who can invest the time, Artsteps provides a compelling, free option for presenting and exploring images and audio of any kind.

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