Monday, August 3, 2015

What if I Want the Symbols to Appear Upfront?

As previously mentioned, the Animated Step-by-Steps™ are designed to add the symbols AFTER the animation sequence is completed. In the 04/06/15 post (When to Add Symbol Support in a Mixed Ability Lesson) we discussed the benefits of having the symbols appear at the end of  the animation sequence to allow students to focus more fully on the text and the language comprehension aspects of the lesson. After all the animations have been triggered the symbols magically appear and the page can be ‘re-read’ using the symbols.  

Sometimes, however, you may wish to  create a ‘parallel universe’ for a student who is experiencing difficulty focusing on the lesson when it is presented at a distance on the  Interactive Whiteboard (IWB).  While the rest of the class is following the Animated Step-by-Step lesson on the IWB, the target student might be following the exact same lesson on his/her personal laptop.  If that child is cognitively young there may be value in allowing him/her to view the lesson with the picture symbols being readily visible BEFORE the animations start.

This goal can be achieved quite simply. First, you will need to convert your downloaded .pps file into a .ppt or .pptx file. You can do this by selecting the file’s text and changing the .pps on the end, into a .ppt or a .pptx (if you are using a more current version of PowerPoint).  This will create a file that you can now edit.

Select Animation on the menu bar, then select the reorder button (located on the far right) to display the full animation sequence for each page.

Select whatever is the last group in the sequence (see diagram on far left). This is the picture symbols grouped together. This group is programmed to fade in automatically after all the previous animations have been triggered. Use the up arrow at the bottom of the dialog box to move that group to the top of the sequence (see image to immediate left)

Now when in presentation mode, the symbols will automatically appear as soon as the page opens.  Presto!  A Secondary Facilitator seated with the child at a laptop can now point out the symbols as the text is being read in the lesson.   

'til the next post (new posts every Monday!)

© 2015 Carol Goossens', Ph.D.
Augmentative Communication Specialist
Speech-Language Pathologist
Special Educator