Jun 28, 2020 - 5 min read - 10,851 views 

Designing a virtual Bitmoji Classroom Space - Getting Started 1/6

If you read my intro post to Bitmoji Virtual Classrooms you know all the ways Bitmoji can make your teaching and student engagement easier. This post is the 1st in my Bitmoji Classroom series and is all about building a virtual classroom. If you are already familiar with how to do this you may want move on to the next post in this series. I have them all posted and linked at the bottom of this page.

Remember that most of what I know and am sharing about Bitmoji classrooms came from generous and talented educators on the Bitmoji Craze for Educators Page on Facebook. Be sure to join and see the amazing content being shared there!

Getting Started

The first thing you need to understand in order to make a Bitmoji classroom is that PowerPoint and Google Slide tools can be used for WAY more than a flat traditional content presentation. When creating a Bitmoji virtual classroom you are using those tools to create a virtual room. You need to think just like an interior designer when approaching this. What is the purpose of this room? Is it a classroom with a whiteboard to share information? Are you creating a digital library for your students? Are you taking your students on a virtual field trip to an exotic or fun location? Based on your room function, you will create a visually appealing scene to enable those functions.

For a traditional classroom design, the EASIEST way of doing this is just by setting a picture of your actual classroom as the slide background. If all the editing and design process is too much, just do that! Your students will already know where to find things and love seeing your actual room. If you like your classroom but would prefer blue walls and gorgeous hardwood floors, now is your chance to have the virtual classroom makeover you will never get in real life! Funny side note: my classroom has old school green chalk boards and I have been asking for them to be replaced since I moved in... that isn't happening, but guess what my virtual classroom has! :)

Here are some examples of virtual rooms that educators made and shared on the Bitmoji Craze for Educators Facebook group to get you inspired even more. Thank you all in your generosity in sharing so freely!

Example "rooms"

Most items you would want to add to your classroom include:

Of course, there is so much more. If there is a physical item in the real world you can find a way to add it to your digital classroom. Watch my tutorial below on how I use the images I find to create my example classroom. This video is a little over 20 minutes long, and my longest video in the series which I hate, but I wanted to make sure you know how to use as many of the tools as possible to help you get started... Think of it as virtual PD!

When inserting your images, you will probably need to use a background eraser program to make them work in your scene. There are many programs that do this, but I found that the one that is easiest to use, produces great quality, and is free is Removebg. Here is a quick tutorial on how it works! 

Pro Tip: Adding hyperlinks to your classroom text and images! You can link anything in your virtual classroom to anything that has a URL. They make the classroom interactive and so much more valuable than a cute room! Here are a few suggestions of links to add:

Things to consider:

We are educators, so we should lead by example. Educators can use some copyright materials for their private classroom under fair use, but please research what that means before you go sharing your rooms publicly. There are a lot of free open copyright places to find images, it just takes a little more time than an open google image search. The classrooms I shared on my video have design elements that I either made or found using proper copyright channels. With that being said, my personal classroom that I will be sharing with students only looks a little better than the one shared here! Need help finding safe pictures? Here are a few ways I was able to:

YouTube Sharing - If you have a YouTube video you want to share with your students, consider changing your URL to a Safe YouTube link. All you have to do is enter the original YouTube URL and it will generate a new one to use in your links. This will eliminate adds and keep your students safer from the crazy world of the internet.