1. Choose a Concept: If you have old cut and paste activities, I would start with those. You are already comfortable and familiar with them. If you have never made one, or used one before, think about concepts that need sorting, matching, or ordering. In my high school math class, I have had students sort features of functions, match quadratics with their factored form, and order steps to geometric proofs. I have also created resources all the way down the grade levels to Kindergarten, where students spell CVC words.
2. Decide on a Graphic Organizer: As you create your activity, always think about the old fashioned cut and paste. Students usually are asked to paste items in some organized manner on a mat or a sheet that is some type of graphic organizer. Design the graphic organizer in its own slide and make sure to take up the full space.
4. Set the Organizer GIF as the Background: Go to: Design Tab --> Background Style --> Fill --> Picture or Texture Fill --> Insert From --> File and choose your file that you just saved in Step 3.
6. Create Cut & Paste Pieces: Again, think about what kind of pieces students would have if they were doing the activity on paper. I have found that it is easier for students to have these pieces made as objects. To do this, design your piece on another slide, then use the Snipping Tool to create the object. (If you have never used the Snipping Tool, you should be able to find it using the search feature in your start button. Here is a quick tutorial on how to use it.)
There are several tricks I have learned in this step:
6a. As I create my pieces, I like to create the answer key first. This way I ensure I have all the pieces I need. It also ensures there is enough room on the graphic organizer for the pieces to fit. If an adjustment needs to be made, I usually make the pieces bigger or smaller. To do this uniformly, select them all (hold the SHIFT key down as you select them), and change the size all at the same time.
6b. Duplicate the answer key slide and use that to scramble the pieces. I usually put the pieces outside the view of the slide as seen above in the Factor Polynomials activity. It is the equivalent of students working with pieces scattered on their desk rather than scattered on the graphic organizer.
6c. Be careful with fancy fonts you may use for your TpT products as they most likely will not transfer to student versions of the activity. When I have wanted to maintain those fonts, I use the snipping tool to turn them into objects like discussed in Step 6.
That’s basically it! Once you get a rhythm, you’ll never want to turn back to scissors, scraps, glue sticks, and a mess.
Leave a link to your activity in the comments section below and I'll be sure to check them out!
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