Tuesday, April 30, 2024

Tech Tuesday - Starting Google Slides in Slideshow Mode (using Lucha Libre Literature as a bonus)

A short and simple one today.  I have a slideshow review for my AP class that I want them to go through when I am not there.  I want to make sure that they go through it in Slideshow mode rather than the typical edit mode you see when you pull up a Google Slides Presentation.  Turns out, that is easy to do.  You just need to modify the link.  The example presentation given here in the links is not the one I am using (that belongs to someone else and I do not know if I have permission to share it), but is a different one that I am going to use for class discussion (Lucha Libre Literature) later.  Since it was handy, I figured I would just share that one.

Creating a Slideshow mode link
Sometimes, especially when you have animation on your slides, you want to make sure that students open it in Slideshow mode rather than edit mode.  There is an easy way to do this.  Normally you link would look like this:


Put this link on your website or Canvas page and a student will pull it up in normal mode. Instead, change the EDIT to PRESENT.


Now when a student clicks it, it will already be in Slideshow mode.  This also works by using the word PREVIEW.  By the way, if you are wanting to share your document with someone, you can change EDIT to COPY and it will take them straight to a COPY FILE page. 

Got any other tricks up your sleeve?  Share them in the comments!

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Friday, April 26, 2024

Worst. Prompt. Ever.

 Had a thought the other day and quickly made it into a thing.  It worked!  (Those spur of the moment ideas do not always do that!)  I challenged my AP Lit kids to write the worst FRQ3 prompt ever - in keeping with the College Board style, that is! The idea is that if they saw this on test day, they would be justified in just laying their head down and crying. I didn't have a set up or anything, just an idea.  They delivered!

So, I put all their entries onto a slides presentation and the next day I made them find texts that would actually fit the prompt.  At first they thought it would be impossible, but once they put their minds to it, they knocked that out of the park and it turned into a great class discussion assignment.

I also had them vote.  Since I had two periods, I have two winners.

This one:

Eeyore from A.A. Milnes The Winnie the Pooh states: “They’re funny things, Accidents. You never have them till you’re having them.”

Either from your own reading or from the list below, choose a work of fiction in which an author did not intentionally write a book. Then in a well-written essay, analyze how the author's unintended oopsies contribute to the meaning of the work as a whole.

and this one:

Transcendentalism was a movement involving authors and artists during the early to mid 19th century that heavily influenced literary works produced at the time.

Select a novel, play, or epic poem written during the transcendentalist movement. Then write a well-developed essay analyzing how the elements of transcendentalism influence a central character and contribute to the meaning of the work as a whole.

If you want to see the others, feel free to check it out here.

I bet that whatever final exam/state test you have, you can probably find a way to tweak this idea into your own assignment.  Worst multiple choice questions or constructed responses.  Have fun!

Friday, April 12, 2024

The Masked Poet - Ozymandias

In 1817 and 1818, Rameses II was all the rage and topic of many a conversation.  Around Christmastime of 1817, Percy Shelley and his buddy Horace Smith were sitting around discussing ancient pharaohs, as one is wont to do, and decided to see who could write the best poem about Rameses II using the title "Ozymandias".  Both got published and experienced some acclaim, but Shelley's poem is the one remembered.  

That begs the question - is Shelley's poem remembered because it is greater or because he was the more popular poet?  The power of an author's name is nothing to dismiss.  Look at any Stephen King book published today and you will see his name in large letters and the title of the book small in comparison.  You also have the trend of writers loaning out their characters (Tom Clancy and Clive Cussler do this) and their name is still huge while the actual writer of the book gets the small print at the bottom of the cover.

In order to figure this out, we need a little blind taste test (so to speak) and what better way to do that than in the spirit of The Masked Singer?

I have a document made up and ready to print for your classroom needs.  You can get it here.  One one side, we have The Rook (Percy Shelley) and the other side we have The Bishop (Horace Smith).  I hand it out to students randomly so that they read different sides first since the order of reading may impact the judgement of the two poems.  

If you use it in your class, drop me an email or leave a comment.

Thursday, April 4, 2024

A Little FRQ3 Speed Training for Your AP Lit Students

Here's a lesson you can use with no prep assuming that you are an AP Lit teacher and you have covered the How to Read Literature Like a Professor concepts.

The FRQ3 prompt requires students to think quickly to have a text ready to go.  A little speed work can help them get mentally prepared.  This presentation will have students see a slide that has two HTRLLAP concepts on it and they will endeavor to write down eight titles that could work with either of the two.  Why eight?  Because I'm octopus obsessed and why not?  I've also ramped up the pressure and anxiety by only giving they one minute.

When the slide comes up, there will be a pause of about five seconds and then the countdown video will automatically begin the countdown.  Once time runs out, have student give their best suggestions and let the class vote on who had the best one.

Good luck with your test prep!

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