There’s something about Powerpoint that brings out the middle schooler in all of us. The bells and whistles are the fun part of any presentation, right? Forget all that Social Studies content I should be researching and just turn me loose with all the cool design features – like animation. Simultaneous animations would double the fun, but can you do that?
You can use two or more animations simultaneously in Powerpoint by setting up an object with two animation effects that occur at the same time, or by having two independent objects perform animations in sync with each other.
If you’re ready to release your inner middle school self and start animating in Powerpoint, read on to find out how to make two animations happen at once.
Powerpoint Allows Simultaneous Animations
We’ve all seen those super cool graphic motions like fly-ins, swipes, or bubbles. They definitely liven up an otherwise run-of-the-mill Powerpoint slide and help keep viewers engaged.
Powerpoint’s animation tool allows you to add motion to text or any object such as a graphic, shape, or image. Not only can you animate an element, you can also control specific details about its motion, such as:
- Animation style
- Duration of the animation
- Order in which the animation occurs
- Grouping of elements to receive animation
According to Microsoft.com, you can apply several animation effects to one object and set up those animations to happen at the same time. You can also apply animation to two different objects and establish animation preferences so that both objects move at the same time.
Animation preferences are in the Animation Pane that is found on the Animations tab once you’ve clicked on the object that will be animated.
How to Make One Object with Multiple Simultaneous Animations
So you’re creating a Powerpoint slide and you want one of your objects – let’s say a butterfly – to come onto the slide with a bit of pizzazz. Flying and twirling to be exact. Here’s how you do it.
Open the Animation Pane
Clicking on the butterfly will bring up several tab options. When you choose the Animation Tab, the Animation Pane will open and this is where you control all the movements of the butterfly.
Clicking on Add Animation brings up a host of motion options. Of course, you can choose any of these that suits your needs. In our butterfly example, we’ll choose Fly In at this point.
To add a second animation, we’ll go ahead and choose Swivel to give the butterfly the twirling effect we want.
Tip: You must add the second animation (or any additional animations beyond that) before moving on to other details. Otherwise any new animation will merely replace what’s already there.
Control the Timing of Animation
This is the step where you create the simultaneous movement that causes the butterfly to twirl as it flies into the slide. You should still be working in the Animation Pane.
You’ll find three timing options under the Timing dropdown menu that control when an animation starts:
- On Click – begins when you click the mouse
- With Previous – begins simultaneously with the previous animation effect
- After Previous – begins after the previous animation effect
For the first animation effect in the list, you will select On Click. Our butterfly will fly into the slide when you click the mouse.
Now here’s the important part: find the second animation effect (Swivel, in this case) and set its timing to With Previous. That means the Swivel motion will begin at the same time as the Fly In motion.
How to Make Two Objects with Simultaneous Animation
Using our butterfly example, let’s say you want two butterflies to come into the slide at the same time. This is super easy to do now that you know all about the Animation Pane. The key is setting up the animation effect exactly the same for each object. Follow these steps for each butterfly:
- Highlight the butterfly to open the Animation Pane.
- Click Add Animation.
- Select an effect. Let’s choose Fly In in our example
- Click on the Fly In animation and go to Timing.
- Choose On Click.
If you set up both butterflies in this way, when you click your mouse on the slide, both butterflies will fly in at the same time.
Setting up two animations to happen at the same time is pretty straightforward and will set your Powerpoint presentation apart from the next guy. Embrace your tweenager creativity and follow the easy steps we’ve discussed here to create simultaneous animations in your next Powerpoint slide deck.