How to Make Teaching Materials Virtual

How to make your non-digital activities work virtually

You may be finding yourself virtually teaching right now. First off, virtual teaching is hard enough for you. You’re dealing with way more interruptions that you can control in the classroom. But you’re handling it like a pro! Keep it up. A second problem you may be facing is your resources. Yes, there are a TON of new digital materials out there for you to use. However, you may have that one lesson plan or one activity you really want to use… and it’s still in paper PDF format. What can you do?

This blog post is going to outline how to make teaching materials virtual. I’ll give tips on how to turn your non-digital activities into working virtual lessons!

Screenshot and Display Pieces

Screenshot and crop passages to display and scaffold reading activity online

One of our first solutions for how to make teaching materials virtual only requires a cropping/snipping tool and your virtual meeting platform. My niece’s teacher recently used a mini-lesson piece of my ELA units in this way. She was using a reading activity from the RL mini-lessons. She wanted the students to ask questions about the PICTURE only first. So what she did was crop the picture out of the passages. Then, she displayed that picture to the students using her “Share Screen” button on Google Meet.

There is a similar button on Zoom, too. She shared this picture snipped directly from a passage. Then, after the students created a question about this image, she cropped just the passage for them to read a few times as a group. And finally, she cropped/screenshot each question and displayed them one at a time. She gave the students two options for their questions. They could either write the questions on a piece of paper in a notebook and display it/send in a picture via Remind app. Or they could type their answers directly into the chat feature of Google Meet. The great thing about that lesson was that there was options for the students.

“Snip” Pieces to Build a Google Slide- How to Make Teaching Materials Virtual

Making lesson plans work virtually in Google Slides

A wonderful teacher reached out to me with a strong conversion that he had made on his own. He needed an RI lesson for virtual teaching, but it hadn’t been made virtual. So he became crafty and turned it into a digital masterpiece. Deonte wanted to use a sorting game that was made for the classroom. Instead of skipping it, he made it work virtually. He screenshot the individual pieces and built his own Google Slide!


  • Snipping Tool on your computer
  • Screenshot your entire screen using PRTSC and cropping the pieces

Google your computer/laptop and the word screenshot. You will be able to find out how to grab screenshots!

Screenshot and Make Your Own Virtual Worksheet

Just like the issue Deonte ran into earlier… You may need a worksheet or passage that is in PDF format, but you need it virtual. If you’re wanting whole pages in digital format, don’t worry! There’s a way to do that, too. You will be screenshotting or “snipping” just like you did in the previous tip. But you’ll simply crop the entire page. Repeat this step until you have all the pages you want. Then, you will copy and paste those JPEGs and add them into Google Slides, Seesaw, or whichever platform you use. (You will want to add it as a background in Google Slides so it isn’t a moveable piece.)

Then, you will add your text boxes! These text boxes will be where students type in their answers.

Are you asking yourself how to screenshot? Most laptops and computers have a Print Screen option. On my computer, I push CTRL + PRTSC and that will add my screenshot to a folder. I do have to crop the images because it will screenshot the entire area. Other computers have a Snipping Tool. This allows you to drag and drop what you want to screenshot.

Print to PDF & Kami- How to Make Teaching Materials Virtual

Print to PDF tips

Print to PDF. If you want students to use pages a few pages from a PDF set, but they aren’t available with digital conversion… You can ‘Print to PDF’ these pages. Head to the ‘Print’ tab. When you hit print, you’ll select the page numbers you want. Then, you’ll click the drop-down menu and click “print to PDF”. This will create a brand new PDF of only the pages you want. You can then upload these to Google Classroom for students to print out and use with a pencil OR you can use Kami. Kami is a software that students can use that allows them to write over a PDF.

Looking for quick and easy digital materials?

Although you have now mastered how to make any material work virtually, you may still want some ready-to-go activities. Here are a few of my favorite digital activities that come ready to go in Google Slides.

Or CLICK HERE to browse my entire digital collection.

Tips and tricks to make resources virtual

Thanks so much for reading.  I hope this helps with any confusion on the block between your collection of teacher resources and your new virtual learning environment.

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