How to Insert Audio into Google Slides

Do you use Google products in your classroom? Google added a new feature last spring and I think it's worth exploring whether you're teaching remotely or in person.

a cat laying with many chicks on its back as a teacher meme about kids not knowing what to do

Does this look familiar?


There's an easy fix for this, and the five minutes it takes to insert directions into Google Slides will make your life and that of your students so much easier! 

Students can self-pace, they're helped if they didn't catch all of your directions the first time, and the kid who was in the bathroom when you were talking will know what to do.

Recording Yourself

Use the voice recorder on your laptop. From my PC, I just clicked on the Windows pane in the lower left-hand corner and typed in "voice recorder." It took me to a page that looked like this (I have previously saved recordings.)

Click the blue microphone and start talking. That's it! When you're finished, click stop and your recording will automatically be saved. Rename it so you don't forget what you did!

When you right-click on the file name, it'll show you the file location so you can find it.

Change the Format

DO NOT skip this step. If you do, you'll spend at least an hour grumbling at your laptop. Not that I'm speaking from experience!)

  • Voice Recorder saves audios as mp4's
  • Google wants mp3's

Go to a free online audio converter like this one, insert your file and click convert. It's that simple. 

Save that file.

Insert into Google Slides

Open the Google Slides you're planning to use and go to the Slide where you want to insert your audio file. Click on Insert and Audio.

Upload the file you want to use. It takes seconds to upload and then you'll see a little icon that looks like this on the slide:


You can move it around anywhere on the slide that you want.

Why You Might Want to Adjust the Settings


If you leave everything alone, students have to click on the icon to hear your instructions. Sometimes that's a good thing, other times, not so much.


To make sure that students hear the instructions, click on Format Options; that takes you to the right side of the screen. Scroll down to Audio Playback and change "on click" to "automatically."


And that, my friends, is how it's done. 

It'll take you no more than a few minutes to do, and save you a lot of time! 

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2 comments

  1. Thanks for sharing. It's been fun following your journey online from afar. This is something I wish Google would make easier and surprised they haven't yet. Perhaps it's a Mac thing, but don't audio files need to be uploaded to your drive first to add them to Google Slides?

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  2. Hi Drew,
    When you go to insert the audio files, you upload them as part of the insertion, but that's a pretty seamless process. I just read this morning, about a Chrome extension for audio called Mote. I want to check that out, especially if it makes the process easier!

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