• Microsoft Teams Basics for Online Collaboration

  • Slideshow on how to use MS Teams

    Summer 2020 MS Teams presentation for teachers. 

    Start at Slide 6. 

  • Video Chat Tips

    Pin the Speaker

    To focus on a particular video, right click and select Pin. The video will be pinned to your view regardless of who's talking. You can pin as many videos as will fit on your screen. If you change your mind, right click again and hit Unpin.

    Support.microsoft.com: Pin a Video

    Share your Screen

    In Microsoft Teams, you can show your desktop, a specific app, presentation, or any file while in a meeting.

    1. Select Share Share screen button .

    2. Select what you want to share:

      • Desktop lets you show everything on your screen.

      • Window lets you show a specific app.

      • PowerPoint lets you show a presentation.

      • Browse lets you find the file you want to show.

    3. After you select what you want to show, a red border surrounds what you're sharing.

      *** If you are sharing a video, be sure to check the "Include computer sound" button in the share tray.

    4. Select Stop sharing to stop showing your screen.

    Support.microsoft.com: Show your screen during a meeting

    Record the Meeting

    • In the meeting controls (on the gray bar), next to Share, select More options More options button > Start recording

    • Your finished recording will in the Microsoft Stream app (Click on the apps tab on the left below "Chat" and search for "Stream). Just select My Content > Videos.

    Support.microsoft.com: Record a Meeting

  • Add Google Drive in Files

    Got files stored in the cloud? No problem.

    • In the desktop or web app, click Files Files button on the left side of the app, and then click Add cloud storage. Pick your cloud storage service from the list that comes up.
    • Be sure to sign in with your account. You might need to turn off your pop-up blocker first.
    • Now you can add files from the cloud as well as from your computer to channels.
    Support.Microsoft.com: Add Cloud Storage in Teams

  • Using Microsoft Office files vs. Google Drive

    As your team works together you'll undoubtedly have files that you'll want to share and collaborate on. Teams makes it easy to share Microsoft Office files and work on them together. If working in Word, Excel, or PowerPoint, your colleagues can even view, edit, and collaborate on them, right within Teams. If your team uses Google Docs, Sheets, or Slides, you can access those files when you add Google Drive as a cloud service. Clicking on a Google Drive link inside Microsoft Teams will open a new tab in which your team can view, edit, and collaborate with the correct sharing settings. You now have one place to put both Microsoft Office files and Google Drive files for your team to access.

    Your files library

    Within each team there are channels. Think of these channels as a place for your entire team to discuss a specific topic, like upcoming training, or project updates. Each channel has its own file folder where you can share files for that specific channel. To access that folder go to the channel and select the Files tab above the conversation window.

    The files library lets you collaborate on files with your team

    Note: Make sure to use the Files tab at the top of the channel conversation window instead of the Files button on the left side of the app. That button gives you access to ALL of your cloud files, rather than just the files for a specific channel.

    In the library, you can upload existing files or create new ones. When you upload a file, it creates a copy in Teams.

    Upload existing files

    There are two primary ways to upload existing files into your library. Both methods start by going to the files folder for your channel and both methods, by default, upload copies of your files to the channel file folder.

    • Drag and drop - Using your mouse, drag the file from where it's currently located and drop it on the Teams window among the files. 

    • Upload - Select Upload,then select the file (or files) you'd like to upload, and select Open.

    Create or upload a new file to your channel's files library

    Any files you upload will be accessible by any member of your team. And just like in SharePoint, you can pin specific files to the top of your list for easy access.

    Create a file

    To create a Word, PowerPoint, or Excel document in Teams, select New, then select the kind of file you'd like to create. The new file will open in Teams so you can begin editing it, and if you'd prefer to work in the desktop version of the app, select Open in Desktop App at the top of the app, in the middle of the ribbon.

    As soon as it's created your new file will be available for your team members to edit as well.

    Co-Edit a file

    Files uploaded and shared to a team are accessible to every member of the Team. In Office for the web, Office for Android or iOS, or the latest applications from Microsoft 365, you and your team members can co-edit Word, PowerPoint, or Excel documents. No need to check files out or worry about if one of your colleagues has the document open. Just open the file you need to edit and if other team members are editing it too your changes will be seamlessly merged as you work.

  • Collaboration Team Types

    Team Types Descriptions Team Types features

    Support.Microsoft.com: Team Types Chart

    Support.Microsoft.com: Teams for Education Examples (scroll down)

  • Roles for Online Collaboration

    If you're organizing a meeting with multiple attendees, you may want to assign roles to each participant to determine who can do what in the meeting. 

    There are two roles to choose from: presenter and attendee. Presenters can do just about anything that needs doing in a meeting, while the role of an attendee is more controlled. 

    Below are the specific capabilities of each role:





    Speak and share video




    Participate in meeting chat




    Share content



    Privately view a PowerPoint file shared by someone else




    Take control of someone else's PowerPoint presentation



    Mute other participants



    Remove participants



    Admit people from the lobby



    Change the roles of other participants



    Start or stop recording



    Change meeting roles

    Before a meeting

    You'll need to send out the meeting invite before you can assign roles.

    Once you've done that, go to Calendar Schedule a meeting button , click on the meeting you just created, and select Meeting options.

    This will bring you to a web page, where you'll see a few choices under Who can present?

    Who can present?

    What happens


    Anyone who has access to the meeting link will join the meeting as a presenter. 

    People in my organization

    Only people in your org will be presenters. External participants will join as attendees.

    Specific people

    Only people you choose from the list of invitees will be presenters. Everyone else will join as attendees.

    Only me

    Only the organizer will be a presenter. All other participants will join as attendees.

    A couple of things to keep in mind:

    • You'll need to send your meeting invite directly to anyone you want to select as a presenter.

    • You won't be able to select someone from a different org as a presenter.

    Note: The ability to select specific presenters isn't yet available for channel meetings. 

    During a meeting

    There are two ways to change someone's role while a meeting is in progress:

    1.     Go to Calendar Meetings button ,click on the meeting, and select Meeting options. Use the dropdown menu for Who can present? to select a new presenter.

    Note: If the meeting is recurring, any change you make in Meeting options will apply to all meeting occurrences.

    2.     Click Show participants in the meeting controls to see a list of the people in the people in the meeting. 

            Hover over the name of the person whose role you want to change and click More options  More options button .         From there, select Make a presenter or Make an attendee


    • If the meeting is recurring, role assignments made in this way will only apply to the ongoing occurrence of the meeting. For future occurrences, participants will keep the role assigned to them on the Meeting options page.

    • If someone exits the meeting and then rejoins it later, they'll rejoin with the last role they were assigned.

  • Norms for Online Collaboration

    Begin and End on Time (Productivity Booster)

    Collaborative teams build respect for each other's schedules when team meetings begin and end on time. 

    When given an exact time limit for completing meeting objectives, people are more likely to work harder to accomplish them. Keeping the time limit for online meetings one hour or below can help increase the effectiveness by helping to maintain attention. 

    Mute Your Microphone

    In a group of 6 or more participants, everyone (except for the host) should start the online call muted and then toggle back and forth between mute and unmute as deemed appropriate. Toggling the mute/unmute feature is a necessary skill for many reasons:

    • You have background noise that makes it difficult for others to hear the person speaking.
    • If you are typing while others are speaking, everyone else can hear the clacking of your keyboard.
    • Interruptions (pets, children, doorbell, phone, etc.) are bound to occur and you might need to mute yourself quickly so as not to disturb the flow of the meeting. 
    • Anytime you need to step away from your device, it would be wise to mute yourself.

    Leave Your Video On Unless...

    • Your internet connection is sketchy. Participants will be able to hear you much clearer if you turn off your video.
    • You're currently in transit as a passenger. Never drive and participate in an online meeting!
    • You're in a large meeting and don't plan on saying anything.
    • Everyone on the call agreed to do voice-only.

    Hear All Voices

    Just like in-person meetings, there are some personalities that like to dominate the conversation and it could be challenging to hear everyone's opinion. Members in an online meeting can use the meeting chat to offer their insight without interrupting the speaker. All participants should keep their eye on new chat message alerts to ensure all voices are heard during collaboration.

    Test Your Connections Before the Meeting

    Time is a precious commodity when gathering in a group for collaborative purposes. Please test your video/audio connections before the meeting in order to maximize productivity. 

  • Breakout Rooms

    How to Set Up Virtual Breakout Rooms in Microsoft Teams for Virtual Classrooms

  • Chat Tips (mention, attachment)


    Grab the attention of a team member by "mentioning" them in the chat. Type the "@" symbol and begin typing their name. Press enter to accept. 

    mention with @ symbol

    The recipient will be notified that they were mentioned. 

    cell phone teams notification


    Improve your workflow by attaching a document to a Teams conversation to get feedback and input.

    In a message, click the paper clip to find the file you want to attach. 

    chat attachment

  • Create a Team

    Create/join a team to communicate with a designated group easily. For instance, a team for your grade level, your department, your club/organization, your curriculum writers, just to name a few. 

    join or create team button

  • Create your own GIFs

    Personalize your messages with animated GIFs. Use the choices that are a built-in chat feature or create your own on Giphy.com

    gif in message

    Enter a search term to find an appropriate animated GIF. 

    thank you gif

  • Not loading properly?

    If the content looks a little jumbled when on Teams online, try refreshing the page to give it a chance to correct itself. 

  • Turn on Notifications

    Turn on notifications so you don't miss a message. Simply follow the prompts upon installation. Or manually turn on notifications from within the Teams app on your mobile device. 

    teams notification

  • Use Keyboard Shortcuts

    Alt+A: Attach a file to a message

    R: Reply to a message

    Alt+/: See all shortcuts available! (Below is just a snipping of a few).

    teams shortcuts

  • Video Calls & Recordings

    Invite your teammates/colleagues, near and far, to meet online! Use the Teams video call tool to have a virtual meeting, share your screen, open a whiteboard, chat, and even save the recording for those who missed it! It's like Google Hangouts with way more capabilities. *** Note: Videorecordings expire after 30 days.  Be sure to change expiration date, or download to YouTube or Google Drive. 

    teams video call

    Visit the Office Support "Meetings & calls" page to learn how!

    We currently do not have the ability to invite users from outside of our organization. 

  • MS Teams Support Page