PowerPoint XP: Animating Slides

Animating slides in PowerPoint XP is a great way to create more dynamic, engaging presentations. With just a few simple steps, you can add movement, emphasis, and flair to your slides.

Why Animate Slides?

There are several key reasons why you may want to animate slides in your PowerPoint presentations:

  • Make presentations more interesting and lively. Static text and images can get boring quickly. Simple animations keep your audience engaged.
  • Reinforce key points. Draw attention to important text or graphics by having them fly, grow, or bounce onto the slide.
  • Enhance flow. Use entrance and exit animations to transition smoothly from one slide to the next.
  • Demonstrate processes. Animated diagrams and illustrations clearly show sequences and relationships.

Types of Animations

PowerPoint provides several animation types to choose from:

  • Entrance animations: Control how text and objects enter the slide, such as swiveling, bouncing, or fading in.
  • Emphasis animations: Draw attention to specific items by making them bigger, brighter, or moving them.
  • Exit animations: Determine how items leave the slide, like dissolving, shrinking, or spinning out.
  • Motion paths: Make items move along a custom path you define, like a circle, zigzag, or arc.

How to Animate Text

Animating text is a great way to make titles and bullet points more dynamic. Here’s a simple step-by-step guide:

  1. Select the text box you wish to animate.
  2. Go to the Animations tab.
  3. Click the animation style you want in the Animation gallery.
  4. Customize options like duration, delay, and triggers.
  5. Click Preview to test it out.

Some popular text animation tricks:

  • Animate bullet points to fly in one-by-one for more impact
  • Make titles slide in from off the slide
  • Emphasize key words by scaling or rotating them

Animating Objects

Animating shapes, images, charts, and diagrams works much the same way as text:

  1. Click the object to select it.
  2. Pick an animation like Grow/Shrink or Spin.
  3. Set the speed, timing, and trigger.
  4. Click Preview to see the animation.

Get creative by layering animations on a single object. For example, have an image spin and grow at the same time or make a diagram bounce onto the slide then pulsate.

Animation Best Practices

When adding animations to PowerPoint slides, keep these guidelines in mind:

  • Use animations sparingly. Just 1-2 per slide is usually sufficient. Too many becomes distracting.
  • Keep it simple. Stick to basic animations—nothing too flashy or complex.
  • Be consistent. Use the same style animations from slide-to-slide for continuity.
  • Match timing. Ensure animation duration matches the pace of your presentation.
  • Preview extensively. Test animations thoroughly to identify any issues.

Presenter Tools

PowerPoint offers useful tools to help present animated slides:

  • Animation Pane gives precise sequence and timing control.
  • Triggers let you start animations by clicking the mouse.
  • Presenter View displays upcoming slide previews and notes.
  • Rehearse Timings runs through the whole presentation to set slide times.

Properly incorporated animations can make ordinary PowerPoint presentations truly captivating. Try out some of these animation tips and tricks to boost engagement and impact next time you present.