- In Word, creating my own style. What a great tool! You can set up a document that is UDL compliant shall we say, then save it so you don’t have to adjust style and format every single time! Big time saver too!
- In Word I also like the table of contents tool. It makes me laugh to think about how many times I hand formatted tables of contents when it was all right there already LOL. Ah well, better late than never, right?
- In PowerPoint I use text boxes all the time! I learned that these can disappear or get wonky when you transfer the presentation to other formats which I’ve never come across before. But to truly be UDL compliant, a presentation needs to be able to be able to be converted without loss of formatting. Lesson learned!
- Narrated slide shows, I was not aware that this was a thing! I will definitely play with this because I put my PowerPoints into Google classroom for students who were absent to use as reference. Though this beats what I used to do which was nothing, it never felt enough because when I present my presentations I augment them with my narration. The PowerPoints in Google classroom lacks that narration thus reducing the efficacy of it. This is another thing I will begin adding in the future – especially when I flip my classroom again in the future which I will FOR SURE be doing!! I loves me some Screencast O Matic !!!!!!!
As for what simple, non-flashy tool or resource I go back to time and time again because it empowers me to accomplish your task or goal, I revert back to PowerPoint once again. I just love that program, I love making PowerPoints and I create strong presentations! I feel like it gives me a vehicle for my teaching voice. It allows me to incorporate my creative side but also my humor side. I use a lot of humor in my practice you see and PowerPoint supports and aids that.
As for “why do we tend to overlook the simple, everyday things for something sleeker or more polished?” I think it’s just the nature of the human beast. My arrows are better than yours because I made them snazzy. Both arrows work just the same, but the appearance of mine makes me better. It’s that same yearning, in my view, that keeps technology and gaming moving forward so rapidly. We yearn to, and please pardon the cliché, keep up with the Jones’ if not surpass them! It goes beyond practicality to vanity really. But again, I believe it’s part of being a human animal – the nature of the beast.