Any teachers out there have smartboards ? How are you using it? Do you find it helpful as a teaching resource?

Tags: Board, Education, K12, Smart, Smartboard, iboards

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I love my ACTIVboard. This was my first year using one. One question I do have is how to upload pictures onto my flipcharts. I know this may be a silly question but I was wondering if anyone could give me any tips on how to do this.
I'd probably open the picture up in another program and use the camera tool in ActivStudio to take a picture of it and paste it into it. The camera tool is in the tool store if you don't have it on your toolbox. You can put it in there by going to customize-tool store. You can then take the picture and put it onto your flipchart--or into your resource library.
The easiest way is to simply drag and drop the image. No copying, pasting or screenshotting is necessary.

You can click and hold the image in Explorer, Firefox or other browser and drag it to your Taskbar on top of Activstudio. Activstudio will then open up and you can place it where you want it. You can also make Activstudio smaller and place Firefox and it side by side for easier dropping.
Hi Barbara,
I just came across this old post and I was wondering how you feel now? I saw a lot of SMART boards at the ISTE convention this past summer and the pre-made curricula that is now available. I have to say I was put off as an educator as far as the multiple choice formatting. Most seemed like they were teaching to the test with low-level thought processes. The graphics are great tools for presenting concepts and I'm sure there are many more positive attributes. I guess I just hate to see this innovative technology being used with the same approach towards assessment.
I totally agree. I've used both promethean and smart board apps and the promethean is much more suited for K-5 in my opinion. The interface is more user friendly and the resources can't be beat. Also, when it comes to teacher created flip charts, promethean has a lot less steps and a bigger wow effect.

The cost of both of the boards are pretty similar.
Thank you for all these wonderful ideas of where to find lessons. I will just start to use Smart notebook this fall and I have found that there are a lot of pre-made lessons and templates already out, so I don't have to start from scratch. Thanks again!

Thank you very much. Really nice websites to work with smart boards. Really helpful. Regards

Love my SMARTBoard - YES, I find it is a great resource every minute every day. In addition to the wonderful responses so far, I use it with a web cam too. Students LOVE to see themselves when create video clips for our daily Calls from the Classroom to email parents and homeroom teachers about what we learned in technology class.
Also, all students can see who we are Skyping - whether it is video or text. SMARTBoard is great to keep students engaged when communicating via webcam and Skype with other teachers many many miles from us.
The SMARTBoard makes a BIG difference. With a computer, we used to huddle around a monitor, with a projector we viewed it larger- a great improvement, but weak on sound. With the SMARTBoard all students can see it well, hear it through the sound system and touch it- a big favorite.
Hmm, so how is it worth the money?

I read here about projected things, better sound... Why bother spending so much money on the board if a wall painted white would also do?

Okay, I'm playing devil's advocate. I have an ActivBoard in my 1:1 classroom and it is wonderful to be able to use it - an endless whiteboard! You need more space? Get a new page without erasing any of the work that was done before.
In addition to the wonderful responses so far..... but I see what you mean- I should have done a better job of explaining how my students and I touch the board.

When we use any tool it can be controlled by interacting with the board, the wireless pad and mouse, or the on-screen keyboard. You are not tied to your computer. Any tool on your computer looks bigger on the board and the controls to the tool do too- and they work when you touch them on the board - very cool with the Digital Blue Camera tools for taking pictures, video and stop motion projects. See my first grade students from last year learning to use a video camera using the SMARTBoard on this video
During any given activity, students and I pass around the wireless tablet from anywhere in the room and I can interact with students and move around the room while still using my computer and board. If I am in the back of the lab and a student has a question that would help others too, you can control the board right where you are and stay by that student's side.

We use the multicolored pens to write for all to see and keep track of our new visitors on Clustr Map.
With software such as Graph Club, on the board students can drag their own marker (birthday cake, pet, vacation spot, pizza....) for the many graphs we create during the year. Students take turns typing the "story" that explains the graph with SMARTBoard's on-screen keyboard.

With Inspiration software students use the board to create graphic organizers for writing activities. they can touch the board and use pens for brainstorming ideas. See last year's 4th grade students in this activity on this video

For reviewing math facts, Kidspiration and the SMARTBoard make an efficient pair. One example: A student chooses a number for the center and we pull 10 shapes favorite shapes/images around it. The student then uses a pen and writes in the shapes the multiples of the center number with a SMARTBoard pen tool. THEN you edit/select all, you can change all the shapes - to another fun shape of choice (for example all sun shapes to all star shapes in a jiffy. We discovered how to do this in my after-school tutorial classes- they all love to practice math facts this way. It works with other operations and fact families too.

The new BETA interactive tools are very cool for creating lessons for any subject - check these out on the SMARTtech website. I created graphing lessons while experimenting with these tools. These are new and keeping me busy and motivated to do more.

Interactive boards are well worth every cent for keeping my teaching fresh and students engaged.
I'm with you Torsten! I start thinking how many class sets of good literature I could buy for $3,000... That said, I think they are very handy for interactive work, such as designing page layouts for a newspaper (recent project). You can move things around, reshape, revert to earlier views... So going beyond making things visible (smartboards or any old projection), making things malleable seems like the real benefit.
I am also questioning the use of interactive whiteboards in classrooms. If money was not an issue, I would think it would be great to add. Since money IS an issue, I question whether this is where we want to spend our funds for equipment and professional development and teachers' time. If our vision if for problem based learning where students work in collaborative groups to solve messy questions, there will be much much less direct instruction to the whole group. Are we better off spending monies on computers in the classrooms so students have quick access to resources as they work on solving their messy problems?



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