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Google Slides' text tools and fonts

This lesson will delve into fonts and text-changing tools in Google Slides. Fonts do more than look good; they set the mood for a design. There are many fonts to choose from, and we will learn how to pick the right one. We'll show you which Google Slide tools are relevant and provide a video tutorial that explains how to use them. You can apply what you learn with a hands-on activity. Come along as we explore fonts, learn how to use them, and get creative with Google Slides!

The most important thing about this lesson is that students learn how to use resources to figure out how to do something.

Fonts fall into four main categories: serif, sans serif, script, and decorative. Serif fonts have small lines at the ends of letters, making them suitable for printed and formal designs. Sans serifs lack these lines for a cleaner appearance, ideal for digital projects. Script fonts resemble cursive writing, adding a formal or playful touch to designs. Decorative fonts have unique letter shapes for drawing attention and are best used sparingly.

In the world of fonts, there are literally hundreds, if not thousands, to choose from. Google Slides offers dozens of fonts, and you can even add more. However, having too many options can be distracting for students, who might spend excessive time font-hunting at the expense of completing their projects. It's best to use only two or three fonts that go well together in a project. Thankfully, there are websites that can help you find font combinations that work harmoniously (I've listed three in the presentation slideshow).

Typography includes not only letters but also all the symbols in a font and the way a page or text is laid out as a whole. There is a set of tools in Google Slides that are designed to work with typography. These tools include formatting, word art, special characters, and bullet points. You and your students may know how to use common text tools like underline, bold, and font size, but there are a few less common choices that are worth exploring.

Word Art is a mix of shapes and text. You can change the font, make text bold or italic, and also use tools for shapes such as resize. Paint Format is another useful tool that lets you copy the style of one piece of text and use it on another. It is simple to add special characters to your text, like arrow and math symbols. You can change the look of these special characters by using formatting tools like bold and italics, just like you would with normal text. You can find a video tutorial for using these tools in the lesson slideshow and in the resources.

In the practice activity, students will put their knowledge of Google Slide Text tools to the test by creating a 3-slide presentation, using most of the tools covered in the tutorial. I provide detailed instructions to guide students through the creation process, which involves crafting a title slide and two supporting slides. In the resources and the lesson slideshow presentation, you can find the student instructions and an exemplar.

The tutorial goes over most of the Google Slide Text tools, but the instructions introduce a couple of tools not covered in the tutorial. However, I've discovered that it's valuable for kids to struggle sometimes figuring out how to complete a task. For me, the most important thing about this lesson is that students learn how to use resources (like the Internet or another student) to figure out how to do something.





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