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Professional Learning

Choosing the Application

brown application

There are many presentation applications available to choose from. There are applications that you can download on your personal computer or mobile device and there are online applications in the Cloud where you can create and store your presentation.

This independent learning unit is only going to touch on some of the more popular ones available to educators. One of the goals of this unit is for you to create a presentation to use in your classroom. You are able to use a tried and true application that you have used in the past, but it is our hope that you will try out something new. 

The most important thing though is to remember the purpose of your presentation! The purpose should drive which application you choose to use with your audience. 

Below are several applications for you to learn about. There are tutorials
and other tips and hints for each one. 


1. Look at each application below. Decide which one is appropriate to use with your audience. If none of these interest you, check out more resources in the box to the right under Additional Articles and Resources. You will see that some of these resources are also digital storytelling resources. Remember your audience and the story you are going to tell during your message to your audience. It may be more appropriate to use a so-called digital storytelling app to get your message across. 

In this section, you are only learning about each application and then choosing one. Go through the tutorials for the one you think you will want to use and learn how to use it. In the next section of this unit, you will learn about design and presentation skills. 

Resources and Tutorials

 Resource Name

 Age Level


TES Teach with Blendspace

tes teach



TES Teach with Blendspace is a online lesson/presentation resource that is perfect for flipping the classroom, project based learning and differentiated instruction. An educator can easily have an interactive presentation built in just minutes with links to websites and bookmarks, embedded videos, handouts, images and text. All you have to do is drag and drop the resources necessary to create your presentation. Watch this video tutorial for assistance in creating your first Blendspace. Using Blendspace in the classroom.



Canva - Students under 13 can use Canva when supervised by an adult. This is an easy-to-use graphic design presentation tool with great template designs, drag and drop images, photographs, or use theirs. Very professional looking results. The Free version shares them publicly on the web and provides a weblink to it, or you can download the presentation.

Canva video tutorials

Google Slides

Google Slides


Google has their own presentation tool similar to Microsoft PowerPoint called Google Slides. It is not as robust, but what makes it powerful is the ability to share editing rights with others. There are also hundreds of templates available. For a quick tutorial on how to create a presentation check out this video tutorial.

PowerPoint Online

PowerPoint Online Choosing the Application


PowerPoint Online: Microsoft now offers a free browser-based version of PowerPoint. The advantage is that it is similar to their software program, and retains formatting when saved to the desktop. A Free Microsoft or school account is required (included in Office 365 for Education). Email verification is done for new accounts. 


Sway Choosing the Application



Sway is a free multimedia creation resource from Microsoft. It requires a free Microsoft Account to sign in. It is fairly easy-to-use to create content and stories to share or embed. Pre-designed layouts, designs and a storyline help you quickly create your content. You can add videos, images, hyperlinks and text. Here are a few examples:

View a report by a 7th grader about a Red Panda




* Additional alternatives are located on the 21things4students Creative Communications Quest.



Additional Resources

1. Canva - Create designs for Web or print: blog graphics, presentations, Facebook covers, flyers, posters, invitations and more

2. Emaze - features a proprietary state of the art HTML5 presentation maker that will create the slideshows, video presentations and even 3D presentations that you always dreamed of

3. Kizoa - create beautiful shows, with music, effects and transitions.

4. Zentation - synchronize video from YouTube with PowerPoint 

5. Knovio - add video and audio to your PP presentations as well as .pdfs