Our school is about to purchase quite a bit of technology. Which is good, we are way behind. The asst. superintendent and the technology coordinator decided "standardized all classrooms".
That means that all rooms will have
- Ceiling mounted projector
- Desktop teacher station (already in place)
- Document Camera
- IWB or Tablet

They cut a bunch of other items (mp3 players, flip camcorders, etc) to make all standardized. My question is "What activities are there for the document camera in Social Studies and English Language Arts rooms that couldn't be done with the IWB or Tablet?"

Tags: camera, document, english, socialstudies

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Instead of tablet, you might want to alert the superintendent about the new interactive Pen product called the AVerPen (http://www.avermedia-usa.com/presentation/product_averpen.asp). It's all about mobility and collaboration (voting system built in) using the AVerPen. You can write on virtually any surfaces and it works incredibly well with a Document Camera and a Projector / Teacher workstation. That will save the district some money.
Aver pen is abut pricey. A class set of clickers, would be my vote, along with an interactive tablet,such as inerwrite Mobi or IPad with Doceri app.
This is a bit off the track... but as our district just hit the wall on this issue I will pass it along. Overhead projectors are great... I love them... They work better than the table mounted projectors... However, the replacement bulb costs are much higher. Three years after our school "modernized" rooms the "smartboards" have once again become "dumbboards" as no one can figure out who is responsible for the $300 per bulb replacement price.

Before your district decides to install overhead projectors make sure they have a plan for replacement and maintenance (is it a custodial or tech department issue?)...
We have had this same issue already. Our tech dept. has discouraged projectors for years because of this. Very frustrating for the teachers and me. They will now be written into the budget.
I agree and with tablets such as the IPad and estoppel app's basically who have an interactive whiteboard. Replacing projector bulbs can be expensive and if you have them mounted, you could end up with white elephants.
is it the Smart Document Camera or the Elmo. Either way its great if there is something you want to put up on the board but cant find anywhere on the internet. Maybe a page from a book, textbook, map, really old newspaper article.
I agree with all about what a Document Camera does and agree that it has it's place. I could go on and on with applications for all elementary subjects and for math, science, vocational classes at the secondary level. However, I don't think the Secondary Social Studies and English teachers will use it very often. I would think that the instances that my teachers want to show something that is not electronic would be maybe once a six weeks. I have a hard time justifying $600 to be used for one day per six weeks. I do see a need to have one available on each hallway. To give one to each SS and Eng Classroom at the High School would cost $13,000 but one per hallway is only $1800. That is a savings of over $10,000 to spend on other technologies just at the High School.

Don't know....maybe I am over thinking this.

My English teachers would hate it if we took away their document cameras. When asked, more often than not I hear "I use it every day." They can't imagine instruction without it, primarily because of the ability to annotate live and improvise when things go wrong. Our document cameras, Avervision AF+'s, allow teachers to choose whether to use the camera alone (in similar functionality as a traditional overhead projector), or in tandem with their computer (allowing archiving of student work, annotations of student examples written in the moment, recording of video clips, etc.). In this way, document cameras have been a wonderful "bridge" technology for those teachers who would like to ease into tech integration.

Another tech integration specialist in my district, Pete Larson, recently gave a great presentation about practical uses of document cameras. He has an elementary focus, but most of his ideas are directly transferable to the secondary classroom (I know - I've used many when introducing these tools to my high school and middle school teachers). I think you'd find his handout very informative: 2 pages of great ideas for a variety of subject areas, including SS and English.

Oh, and it's not a tool that lends itself to sharing. It takes too long to hook up and take down. Prior to "standard classroom" model, I have personal stories of these things sitting in closets.
You can find documents cameras rather inexpensive these days. I used an Elmo and I took pictures, made copies of student work. I found an inexpensive alternative http://www.ipevo.com/.

I don't know what just happened, but I lost my original post. I love document cameras and so do all the staff at my high school. Kids can's wait to go up front and share their work using it. I also do lots of activities on my white boards with it. Editing student work is almost fun now. Check out the above link for some great starter ideas. Even teachers who normally shy away from technology (and they are still with us) quickly learn to love working with it.



I love document cameras, but I actually use a web cam that I paid $10.00 for and point straight down. I get great results with it, it has a smaller footprint, and it works well in low light.
Which camera are you using?



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