Designing Apps in Keynote

While people might still be thinking about Code Week… do not look past the Learning Centre project called Design a Simple App. This is perfect for younger learners who are not ready for Swift coding but want the experience of creating a functional app prototype. In present mode it behaves just like an app!

This project is in four stages and can be completed quite quickly. My year 5 and 6 students were very motivated at all stages of the project. This is why we spent much more than two hours on it. There are a lot of learning outcomes in the Keynote presentations skills,  such as the use of links between slides, websites and email addresses. 

We had a lot of fun pitching our apps to the class too. In addition to promoting our apps we gave quick speeches to the class which was a lot of fun. 

Useful Tips for Keynote Prototypes

  • Get one button formatted nicely and then copy/paste it. This is to make sure they are consistent sizes and it looks better!
  • Use the Keynote shape guide lines to line up buttons.
  • Allow more chances for student feedback about their apps, this is how the real world works!
  • Change your slidedeck settings (tap on the down arrow in the top left corner next to your file name); presentation options > presentation type > links only (so tapping a slide will not make it change, only buttons will).
  • Rather than using links to other external videos, have students make their own video or GIF.
  • Make your own example first, that way you know what problems students may face when they try.

Quick Pitch Template 

Hi, I’m ________ (student name). 

My product is ________(product name)

Have you ______________ ? (problem that product solves)

Well guess what? Now there’s an app for that! _______ (app name). 

So if you are ready to live without ________ (problem) you can buy _________(app name) for the app store now for only $________.


This is a screenshot of the first slide in a keynote app idea. It is called Snack Finder and has some fun pictures of snacks.
Here is an example of feedback students gave each other about their app ideas. They used this to improve their prototypes.
This is a slide from the keynote app prototype about playing baskeball.
This is an app prototype about football (soccer).

Design a Simple App

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