Time’s Up!

It happens every time.  I give my class 10 minutes to work on something and it ends up being 15, not because they need the additional time, but because I’ve lost track of time or didn’t note the time when we started.  Meanwhile, unless I continually give the 5-minute warning, 3-minute warning, 1-minute warning, etc., students have no idea when they have to start wrapping up.

This happens to all of us at some point or another, especially if you are working along with your students.  Not knowing how much time has elapsed/remains makes transitions difficult, especially for students who may already have challenges with executive functioning.

If you use web-based countdown timers when projecting, you’ve experienced having to jump out of your presentation to a new tab that displays the timer.  A simple solution is to embed a timer into your Google Slides.  YouTube has a wide selection of timers that include (or not) music, reminders, alarms, and any number of visual effects.

The process is the same as adding any YouTube video to your presentation.  If you haven’t been using videos in your presentation, there are two workflows below.  If you have been using videos, consider upping your game and keeping on track by adding timers to your presentation tools!

Click on the image to try out the timer in a Google Slide. (Remember to put the slide deck in Presentation Mode.)

Process

You can start within either YouTube or your Google Slides presentation.  If you want to scroll through and play a number of timers before selecting one, I suggest starting in YouTube.

Starting in YouTube

  1. Search for: Timers 5 minutes (or whatever length you need)
  2. Find a timer you want to use.  Remember to check out the end of the video for how/if the timer gives an alarm.
  3. Select “Share” and copy (ctl C) the URL (web address) to your clipboard.  (It will start with “http://youtu.be/”)
  4. Go to your Google Slides presentation.
  5. Select “Insert” then “Video” and past the URL into the box next to the YouTube icon and hit return.  You should see a thumbnail of your video below.
  6. Click once on the video thumbnail (it will now have a dark box around it) and click “Select” at the bottom of the screen.
  7. You will be directed back to your slide where you can reposition and/or resize the video player to fit your needs.
  8. When you are in Presentation Mode, click on the Play arrow to start and stop the timer/video.

Starting in Google Slides

  1. Select “Insert” from the menu bar and “Video” from the drop-down menu.
  2. You have two options here for pulling videos from YouTube:
    1. paste/type in the URL for a timer video you have selected.
    2. Type “timer 5 minutes” into the search box next to the YouTube icon which will pull a list of videos that match your criteria from YouTube.
  3. Click on the video you want from the thumbnails provided and then “Select” at the bottom of the screen.
  4. You will be directed back to your slide where you can reposition and/or resize the video player to fit your needs.
  5. When you are in Presentation Mode, click on the Play arrow to start and stop the timer/video.

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