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Dry erase boards are so last century.
Interactive boards — digital boards that can display images from computers as well as have items manipulated by teachers and students — are becoming more common in classrooms, and teachers find them to be a great way to engage students and keep them active in their learning.
Elizabethtown Independent Schools has an interactive board in every classroom in its elementary schools, and about 25 percent of the classrooms at T. K. Middle School and Elizabethtown High School have one.
Kelli Bush, the principal at Morningside Elementary School, said teachers use them in settings where all of the students are participating, and students can come up and use the board themselves. Some of the boards can respond to just the touch of a finger on the surface, so they’re perfect for young children, she said.
“They’re very tactile in that way,” she said.
The classrooms also have clicker sets, where students can punch in answers to questions posed by the teacher, and the results will be shown on the board. Teachers can know how effective their lesson has been, Bush said.
“It gives them immediate feedback,” she said.
The teachers will also use the boards with small groups of students as well.
Amy Truitt, a first-grade teacher at Morningside Elementary School, uses her interactive board ever day. She said since students use technology in so many other ways, not incorporating new innovations into the classroom is doing students a disservice.
“And it’s fun and they love it,” she added as a much simpler reason for the boards’ success.
There are 385 boards in the Hardin County Schools system.
Casey Sidebottom, a special education teacher at J. T. Alton Middle School, said the sounds and the brightness of the board really catches her students’ attention. It also gets the students out of their seats and moving, which gives the classroom a more fun atmosphere.
“It’s hard to remember what I did before that,” she said.
Jonathan Fairbanks, a science teacher at Central Hardin High School, said he thinks his board is an effective teaching tool because it involves them in teaching the lesson. With lab activities, they can graph the information gathered on the board.
“The whole point is for them to use it,” he said.
Kelly Cantrall can be reached at (270) 505-1747 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
What it can do...
Creating, viewing and annotating student PowerPoint and multimedia presentations in real time.
Showing streamed or downloaded videos.
Using online map and satellite imagery to teach geography.
Displaying artwork or online museum presentations.
Demonstrating moviemaking techniques.
Viewing and analyzing competitive sports and physical education activities.
Teaching students how to conduct research on the Internet.
Working collaboratively on writing and editing exercises, math lessons, and science experiments.
Instructing the class on the use of a software program, keyboarding techniques, and other computer skills.