Thursday, December 10, 2015

Google Gifts: Horizontal Navigation Templates in Google Slides

During the weekdays of December, we're sharing one tool per day.  We're calling it our Google Gifts series.  Some of these come directly from Google, and others are tools that enhance Google Apps or Chrome.  

Shared Templates in Google Drive
Today we’re re-sharing (and re-gifting) multiple tabbed templates in Google Slides.

When we originally shared multiple tabbed Google Slide templates (or multiple source templates), it was within the context of providing a structure for students to have multiple sources of information to synthesize into a written response (kind of like the types of questions they would see on PARCC and are part of our literacy standards).  So, a teacher could have 1 slide with a video, 1 slide with text, and 1 slide with a map (for example) to provide a rich set of resources.   Because these are built in Google Slides, these could be embedded into just about anything, including our Learning Management System, Schoology.

The real gift of the tabbed templates, though, is that they provide horizontal navigation. And one of the reasons we are re-gifting them to you is that they have now been updated and color-coded (different color choices are available), which makes them visually appealing as well as helping a reader or viewer access content.

In addition to using them for multiple source synthesis questions, here are 5 other ways to use these “gift-ed” templates for teaching & learning (notice the top navigation!):

The templates provided in this shared folder all have the word “Tab” in the tabs; however, if you would like to modify the template, you can change it to something else. Be careful not to delete the text box when you change it -- it is linked to certain slides and deleting the text box will “break” the navigation. In addition, remember to change the text tabs for all slides so they all look the same.

If you will be using modified templates with students, it might be a good idea to either “force a copy” via shared link (see information in our previous blog post) or use Google Classroom to push them out to students. This will keep the navigation links intact and provide them with the structure you’d like them to use.

The flexibility and visual appeal of these layouts make them a great instructional gift! Happy tabbing!

Special thanks to Amber Paynter, who created & designed the templates that we’re sharing with you.


  1. I love the horizontal tabs! I did add the folder to my drive, but the shared folder is set to view only in your share settings. It will not allow me to edit the tabs.

    1. Hi, Andrea -- Yes, because they are templates, those aren't editable. However, you should be able to open them and make copies of the ones you'd like to use. Once you make your own copy, you can edit the tabs in your version to whatever you need.