Teacher Tech blog with Alice Keeler

Paperless Is Not a Pedagogy

Alice Keeler

Feature: Create Gamified Choice Board by Category

A feature added to an Add-on for Google Sheets lets you turn it into a Google Slides choice board. Use the Roster Extras for Schoolytics Add-on in Google Sheets to quickly create a gamified choice board. Feature: Create Gamified Choice Board by Category
Feature: Create Gamified Choice Board by Category

I create Google Workspace Add-ons for teachers. Add-ons are under the Extensions menu in Google Docs, Sheets, and Slides to add extra functionality. I find it handy, as a teacher, to start brainstorming ideas with a Spreadsheet or a Google Doc. If you were wanting to create a gamified choice board one way to do that is to start a list in a Google Sheets spreadsheet that lists out the category, the task, the XP points, and the difficulty. Create gamified choice board by category automatically by using a feature in the Add-on Roster Extras for Schoolytics.

Choice is Engaging

Choice is engaging because it empowers individuals by giving them a sense of autonomy and control over their learning experience. When students are presented with options, they become more invested in the outcome, as they feel that their personal preferences and interests are being acknowledged and respected. This fosters motivation, curiosity, and a deeper connection with the subject matter. Furthermore, choice caters to diverse learning styles and preferences, allowing students to approach tasks in a way that best suits their unique needs and strengths. By creating an environment that promotes choice, educators can facilitate a more inclusive and stimulating learning experience that nurtures students’ innate desire to learn and grow.

Choice is an Option for Gamification

Incorporating choice as an element in gamified activities significantly enhances the learning experience by tapping into the intrinsic motivation of participants. By offering a variety of options and pathways to reach objectives, gamification encourages exploration, experimentation, and problem-solving, fostering a sense of personal agency and creative thinking. As individuals navigate through various challenges and make decisions based on their preferences and strategies, they become more engaged and invested in their progress. This heightened level of engagement not only facilitates deeper understanding and retention of knowledge but also promotes a sense of accomplishment and satisfaction, ultimately transforming the learning process into an enjoyable and rewarding experience.

What is Roster Extras for Schoolytics

Roster Extras for Schoolytics is an Add-on that adds additional functionality to the roster exports from Schoolytics. After logging into Schoolytics as a teacher click on the Students table on the side. This will allow you to “Generate Class Roster” which exports to a Google Sheets spreadsheet.

Since we want learning to be fun for our roster of students, I have added this gamification feature to the sidebar of choices within the Add-on.

Using the Extensions menu choose “Roster Extras for Schoolytics.” This will allow you to see some of the features you can do with your Google Sheets spreadsheet. One option is Google Slides™Choice Board.

Screenshot of the sidebar. There is an arrow pointing to the bottom option of "Google Slides Choice Board" with a Setup list of choices button in grey and a Create Google Slides button in blue.

Setup List of Choices

Click on the “Setup List of Choices” button in the sidebar. This will insert a sheet with column headers for you to brainstorm out your challenges. Create a category, a difficulty level, Title the Challenge, and how many XP points the challenge is worth. Create a list with a recommended 3 category options.

Create Google Slides™

After you have brainstormed out your list, use the sidebar again to click on “Create Google Slides.”

Screenshot of a spreadsheet filled out with a table of choices and an arrow pointing to the blue button in the sidebar to create google slides.

Automagically Google Slides are Created

If you have pop ups enabled the Google Slides will automatically appear in another tab. Otherwise, check your Google Drive.

Create Gamified Choice Board by Category

A rough draft of your choice board, organized by category, will be created. A rectangle for each category will be generated. Underneath each category rectangle is a “button” linking to a slide to allow you to add the details of task.

Create Gamified Choice Board by Category is created in google slides. This is a screenshot of the google slides that has rectangles of what was in the spreadsheet organized on the slide. An arrow is showing that a linked slide was created per choice option.

Decorate the Choice Board

Highlight, lasso, multiple rectangles on the choice board at once to set the same formatting. Consider using the “Theme builder” under the View menu to modify the appearance of all the choice slides at once.

Publish to the Web

Since the rectangles on the first slide act as buttons to the other slides it is recommended to use the File menu and choose “Share” and “Publish to the web.” Share the published link with students. This allows them to click around in the choice board.

See this raw sample of an export from the spreadsheet of choices on the board. This is an example of the initial rough draft that would be available for you to customize.

© 2024 All Rights Reserved.