Beacon Lesson Plan Library

Ladies and Gents, Start Your PowerPoint Engines

Kay Taylor


Students are introduced to the PowerPoint presentation program. Students create three slides and incorporate text formatting, graphics, transitions, and sounds into their slides. Slides are saved on zip disk for use in a follow-up presentation lesson.


-Name of author and bibliographic information
-Multimedia projector/computer
-Projection screen
-Zip disk
-Computer station for each student
-List of authors (related to a unit of study)


1. Arrange computer lab for use and be sure that Powerpoint is available on all computers. Make arrangements with appropriate personnel to load Powerpoint if needed.
2. Arrange with Technology Coordinator or Network Supervisor to have a class folder created on network in which students can save their work. Learn how to save work to the folder if necessary.
3. Create sample slides to show students during lesson.
4. Prepare list of authors and/or print out author bibliographic materials.
5. Save sample slides on teacher zip disk.
6. Check that each student has an active network account and Internet permission. (Optional: provide individual disks for students to use in class only) Make other arrangements for students without Internet permission.
7. List the assessment criteria on the board or chart. (see assessment section)


1. Introduce the lesson by brainstorming with students the different ways they have presented projects in the past: written reports, research papers, oral reports, skits, posters, etc. Explain that PowerPoint is a powerful presentation program that allows creativity with sounds, graphics, text, etc. Show sample slides pointing out examples of graphics, text boxes, transitions, and WordArt. Talk about transitions - what they are and when to use them.

2. Distribute Ladies and Gentlemen Start Your Powerpoint Engines Assessment Checklist. (See Attached File) Review the checklist and explain to students what you will be observing and assessing them on during and after the lesson.

3. Demonstrate how to create a new slide, insert text and pictures from the Internet, WordArt, sounds, transitions, and how to save and retrieve file from network class folder. Students should practice each procedure along with the teacher.

4. Assign students an authorís name (from a teacher selected list of acceptable authors) which will be used in this lesson and in future lessons. Use the Website listed below for students to obtain the information needed to use on the slide. If time doesn't permit researching, the site will allow you to print out author bibliographies, which can then be given to students to use to obtain information for their slides.

5. Allow students hands-on time to create 3 slides and incorporate sound, transitions, authorís picture, WordArt, and text into the slides and save file in network class folder. Reinforce that information must be correct based on the author's bibliography, however, creativity is encouraged!

6. Provide assistance as needed.

7. Remind students of the areas in which they will be assessed (see assessment section) You may even want to have students list these criteria on a sheet of notebook paper to place beside the computers as they work. Then, as you circulate, you can note areas of strength as well as areas that need work. Provide feedback when walking around. These can be taken up to be used as a guide when assessing the 3 slides.

8. Students should save their work onto disks or the network folders set up before this lesson begins. After class is over, teacher can access network folder to review student work or use the individual student disks. You may also decide to copy student work onto a zip disk for later use.


Use formative assesment during this activity. This is a low stakes type of assessment and the activity is ungraded. Observe each studentís use of the PowerPoint presentation software. The assessment will be ongoing throughout the activity with the teacher providing feedback to guide students and improve their work. Assess the studentís ability to insert text, graphics, transitions, sound, and WordArt into 3 PowerPoint slides. Provide specific feedback and guidance to those who need help.

Note: Circulate and formatively assess students as they use the technology tools. Provide assistance for students who are experiencing difficulty and monitor accordingly.


1. Schedule computer lab for after school use for students needing extra help. Allow students with varying exceptionalities 3 days to complete assignment if considered necessary.
2. Author names can be used in future research paper and Powerpoint assignments.
3. Author names can be used in group novel studies.

Web Links

Web supplement for Ladies and Gents, Start Your PowerPoint Engines
Author's Dictionary

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