"As schools move progressively into a digital learning environment, interactive whiteboards are being widely adopted in primary and secondary classrooms." (Department of Education and Training, 2009).
Interactive whiteboards, or Smartboards as they are sometimes referred to, offer students a hands-on learning experience over all Key Learning Areas. They are operated using specially designed markers and by finger-touch. Brown (n.d.) lists a range of benefits for using interactive whiteboards in the classroom, some of these include:
- enhanced presentations by integrating a variety of materials such as pictures, graphs and links to websites.
- create customised learning objects to suit the class needs.
- student collaboration.
- broaden the use of ICTs and alternative modes of delivery.
I have used interactive whiteboards in my practicum classroom recently, during a mathematics lesson. I used a hundredths grid to teach the concept of decimal numbers. I encouraged individual students to colour the squares to represent the numbers I told them, I also asked other students to provide numbers for representation. I found this helped with the learners' understanding through the use of interactive hands-on materials as well as peer tutoring.
During a previous practicum, I witnessed the Smarboard being utilised during a literacy lesson, where they students were able to physically choose alternative words to retell a provided story.
Interactive whiteboards in the classroom are a wonderful invention!
Brown, S. (n.d.). Interactive Whiteboards in Education. TechLearn. York: UK. [electronic resource]. (http://www.jisc.ac.uk/uploaded_documents/Interactivewhiteboards.pdf). Retrieved 16 August 2009.
Department of Education and Training WA. (2009). [electronic resource] (http://www.det.wa.edu.au). Retrieved 16 August 2009.