Many schools and classrooms would love to have their own app but the skills and/or cost of developing an app is often beyond our immediate reach. Google Slides offers a clean solution to your app dilemma. Try out this example on a mobile device to see where I am going with this: bit.ly/slidesapp
The content can be easily adjusted and authoring privileges can be given to school groups like teachers, PTO, administrators, food services, etc.. to update certain portions of the web app.
A relatively simple solution to the School-Web-App-Dilemma. You can start with this template: bit.ly/slidesappCOPY and change images and content as you wish or start here to create your own:
Step 1: Go to Google Slides and start a new presentation.
Step 2: Click File – Page Setup…
Step 3: Select Custom – 8 x 11.5 inches (click OK)
Step 4: SLIDE ONE – add a school mascot or other image and a “Click to Enter” shape. The title of the slide deck will appear as the title of the app. In iOS, the first slide will appear as the icon image, try playing around with different images to make a custom page icon on the mobile home screen.
Step 5: SLIDE TWO – Add a home screen slide with your table of content style information
Step 6: Add a slide for every SLIDE TWO item unless you plan to hyperlink content out of the slide deck (like I did for the “School Calendar” button). Be sure to add a “HOME” button on each page to return the user back to SLIDE TWO.
Step 7: Add a hyperlink to slides within the slide deck to connect them with SLIDE TWO. This is important for the “HOME” button and for linking the Content from SLIDE TWO to the relevant slide.
Step 8: Once complete click “SHARE” and make the link public (or limit within your school domain).
Step 9: Hack the shared page’s URL by selecting everything in the URL from the word “edit” and right
Delete the selection and add the word “preview”
This will force a full-screen preview of the shared slide deck and create a more app-like experience for the user.
Step 10: Distribute the URL to users and instruct them to add a “Home Screen” button.
- iOS – Safari: enter address & select the share box & “Add to Home Screen”
- Android – Chrome: enter address & click three dots and select “Add to Home Screen”
Please let me know if this works for you. I’d love to see examples of how you take this process to the next level!
Notes for Web App Buttons and Icons: The Noun Project offers Creative Commons icons for free as long as you provide proper credit, use the embedded credit already in the icon you downloaded, or you can copy the attribution text and add it to your citations, about page, or place in which you would credit work you did not create.