Introduction

Hi there, and welcome to our blog experience. This blog focuses on the way Interactive Whiteboards can be utilised by pre-service educators in the subject area of History.

So why did we decide to take this angle for our assignment? As pre-service educators ourselves, we discovered that after a few practicums, our experience and engagement with Interactive Whiteboards was little to none. This alarmed us, as we know we will the part of a generation of teachers who need to be able to successfully engage with and teach ICTs in the classroom; and this includes Interactive Whiteboards.

This experience is interactive; we appreciate and encourage any form of opinion, experience or any ideas that can be put forward. We want to create a community where participants are given the research and resources to learn about and engage with Interactive Whiteboards, but also have the opportunity to make up their own minds about this ICT medium. This is an ‘experience’, not a ‘lecture’.

Your task as the participant: By participating in this online event, we only ask a few things of you. Firstly, to follow each step as it is illustrated to you. Secondly, when prompted, we would appreciate any opinions, experiences or comments on our topics, as well as taking the time to answer the posed questions at the end of each topic. It would be fantastic to have a growing community of ideas coming out of this blog to help demonstrate everyones’ own understanding of Interactive Whiteboards and their use in schools.

By the end of this blog experience: By the end of our blogging experience, we are hoping to provide an experience that leaves the participant feeling as if they are capable and able to undertake and understand what it is like to be a pre-service educator, and to utilise the Interactive Whiteboard systems for the subject of History. By reading and participating in our forums, participants will be given the tools to go fourth into new schools and embed their rich understanding of IWBs and their importance and place in Australian schools.

A little bit about Interactive Whiteboards:

This video is a short tutorial or example of why ‘SMART’ boards, or IWBs are fantastic to use in Primary schools. Please watch by clicking the link below.

The next video is an example of how IWBs are used in the classroom. This is just an example of a lower primary class engaging with the Interactive Whiteboard to learn new letters and sounds. Notice how engaged and fixed the students are on this media and how the teacher uses the IWB to enhance the learning experience. Please watch by clicking on the link below.

If you have any comments on these videos, please feel free to post in our forum. There should be a box below for comments or a link labelled ‘leave a comment’. If not, please move to the left hand side of the screen and click on the next tab labelled “Background Research”. Or, simply scroll down. 🙂 ENJOY!

Haylee, Sarah, Cassie and Alicia.

 

Consider these questions and share your thoughts:

1. How much prior experience have you had with using IWBs in the classroom environment?

2. Have these experiences been positive or negative?

3. What do you think your strengths and weaknesses are in regards to IWBs or the History strand?

 

Advertisements

Background Research

The following are research articles that contain information in regards to Interactive white boards and how these relate to the Australian Curriculum. After reading these please view the pro’s and con’s page  and respond via the forum at the bottom of this page.

Campbell, C., & Martin, D. (2010). Interactive Whiteboards and the First Year Experience: Integrating IWBs into Pre-service Teacher Education. Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 35(6), 68-75.

This article focuses on how pre-service teachers using IWB’s to incorporate e-teaching into their lessons and discusses the pedagogical implications for teachers in the classroom. It also discusses the importance for educators to become more conversant with technology. IWBS can transform the way a teacher uses technology in the classroom. They provide ways of incorporating e-teaching into lessons by allowing digital convergence; technology is no longer an add-on feature but an integral part of classroom teaching (Kent, 2004a, 2004b). IWBs ‘replicate the functions of older presentation technologies such as flipcharts, overhead and slide projectors and video players’ (Schuck &Kearney, 2007, p.8 as cited by Campbell & Martin, 2010.), but offer a more varied use of teaching materials. These include creative and dynamic integration of web-based materials, rich media and manipulation of text and images (Campbell & Martin, 2010.).

Research has found that IWB use increases the enjoyment and motivation of all classroom participants (Levy, 2002 as cited by Campbell & Martin, 2010.). Through IWB’s students are able to share their ideas with the rest of the class, which is great for group work and social learning. Therefore IWB’s are versatile for learning of all ages and cater for a range of learning styles, across all areas of the curriculum. Issues are also addressed involving IWB’s, as teachers need appropriate training and support. This may take up time for staff to develop confidence and knowledge to use the new technology. As pre-service teachers we are the teachers of the future and we must take every opportunity to develop into quality teachers through the use of adequate pedagogical approaches to support the use new technologies.

Lawrence, E. M. (n.d.). Utilizing 21st Century Tools to Teach about Past, Present, and Future: Preparing Social Studies Teachers to Integrate Technology. Retrieved from: editlib.org/d/30822

This article looks at the social studies curriculum and how IWB’s can support and enhance student learning and aide by motivating learners and helping students develop connections. The need for training pre-service teachers is also addressed to assist teachers in using technology for teaching and learning in more meaningful ways. This is applicable throughout the curriculum and through the use of primary source materials, technological tools and content rich materials; student’s education can be enhanced.

Gregory, S. (2010). Enhancing Student Learning with Interactive Whiteboards: Perspective of Teachers and Students. University of New England, 25(2).

Gregory (2010) states, that when used in a pedagogically sound manner, interactive whiteboards (IWBs) are a valuable resource for connecting students with their learning. She addresses the need for pre-service teachers to require skills in using IWBs in their teaching and that teacher staff also need to gain these skills, through professional development.  In 2007 IWB’s were first introduced into the curriculum as ICT’s, One Learning Outcome of Information Communication Technology (ICT) for pre-service teachers is ‘Demonstrate understanding of the potential of ICT to enhance learning, including video conferencing and the connected classroom’ (Gregory, 2010, p.31). This article also addresses that as pre-service teachers are need to be encouraged to gain a sound understanding of technology that is available for us to use in the classroom. As we know IWBs can be incorporated into the curriculum and provide unlimited possibilities to enhance teaching and learning.

How does the Curriculum relate to the use of IWB’s in History?

In the Australian Curriculum, students develop ICT capability as they learn to use ICTs effectively and appropriately to access, create and communicate information and ideas, solve problems and work collaboratively in all learning areas at school, and in their lives beyond school. Through school history students develop knowledge and understanding of the past in order to appreciate themselves and others, to understand the present and to contribute to debate about planning for the future. Therefore, incorporating ICT in the classroom is very beneficial for all key learning areas, and in this case we have shown how it can enhance the History strand.

The Melbourne Declaration on the Educational Goals for Young Australians (Ministerial Council on Education, Employment, Training and Youth Affairs, 2008) recognises that in a digital age, and with rapid and continuing changes in the ways that people share, use, develop and communicate with ICT, young people need to be highly skilled in its use. To participate in a knowledge-based economy and to be empowered within a technologically sophisticated society now and into the future, students need the knowledge, skills and confidence to make ICT work for them at school, at home, at work and in their communities.

Direct links to the Australian Curriculum for ICT and History:

 
 
 
 
 
ICT
 
History
 
 
Please answer these questions and share any thoughts:
 
After reading the Background Research and Curriculum Standards, how would you feel about incorporating IWBs into your classroom and more specifically into the History Stand?

Relating back to your strengths and weaknesses, do you have any further concerns regarding IWBs or History?

Pros and Cons

These are the positives and negatives we have gathered in regards to the use of Interactive White Boards. These are to inform you of the different perspectives in regards to how IWB’s can be used in a classroom setting. Please respond via the forum with your idea’s and opinions on whether you think they hinder or benefit student learning.

Positives Negatives
•Interactive whiteboards can assist technophobic teachers to use this medium with ease for presentations from the front of the room.

•They allow teachers to create easily and rapidly customised learning objects from a range existing content and adapt it to the needs of the classroom in real time.

•The interactive whiteboard makes it easy for pre-service teachers to enhance presentation content by easily integrating a wide range of material into a lesson, for instance, a picture from the internet, a graph from a spread sheet or text from a Microsoft Word document.

•They rapidly demonstrate the potential for alternative modes of delivery and are great for demonstrations.

•The board can also accommodate different learning styles. The board can accommodate different learning styles. Tactile learners can benefit from touching and marking at the board, audio learners can have the class discussion; visual learners can see what is taking place as it develops at the board.

•IWBS support students with disabilities who benefit from large screen size.

•They are highly engaging, very hands on and interactive. They area colourful tool which students respond well to. Can be customised both in the pen and highlighter features to display a number of different colours. These features can be significant in behaviour management.

•Their surface can become damaged, necessitating expensive replacement.•Front projection boards can be obscured by one or more users.

•Teachers need the skills to use the IWBS. Teachers may not be confident with new technology and will not be able to use it to its full potential.

•Only one student can be doing an activity on the IWBs at one time. This can be time consuming.

•Need to be at the right height for the teachers and students to use (issues with set up).

•Technology can often be unreliable/may not work.

  • They are expensive and also have high maintenance costs, compared to other technologies that offer the same functions.

 

Resources and Teaching Ideas

This page contains a range of teaching resources accessible through websites. The internet has thousands of free sources to help teachers incorporate IWBs into their classroom. The particular resources include activities for use in the History curriculum strand. They have all been specially compiled for use on IWB’s and are very easy to access and use.

 

20 Interactive Whiteboard Resources for Teachers.

http://www.whiteboardblog.co.uk/2009/07/20-interactive-whiteboard-resources-for-teachers/

This website contains a list of 20 interactive whiteboard resources and activities guaranteed to stimulate learning.  The purpose is to allow teachers to easily set activities which enhance thinking skills surrounding not only the key earning area of History but all of the curriculum strands. The website separates the resources into two categories, one for general resources and the other for games and activities which makes it easy to find what you are looking for!

Topmarks: The best, free interactive whiteboard resources

http://www.topmarks.co.uk/interactive.aspx?cat=105

This website also has resources for all of the curriculum strands; however this link takes you to the History page and displays a great range of engaging activities. The links take you directly to the website where you can quickly set up the activity ready to go.

 

TeachHub.com: 65 Free Interactive Whiteboard Resources

http://www.teachhub.com/free-interactive-whiteboard-resources

This website show cases a list of 65 interactive whiteboard resources and activities guaranteed to stimulate learning. The categories include general teacher resources, interactive games and activities and more unique resources students love.

 

My Place: For Teachers

http://www.myplace.edu.au/default.asp

On this website you will find rich, educational material to support primary and lower-secondary teachers using the My Place TV series in the classroom. It allows you to explore background information on events and people significant to Australia’s history. The video clips from the TV series are able to be viewed using the IWB for the whole class to see and discuss. The teaching activities relate to current themes and there is also a forum to chat with other teachers.

 

Scholastic: Teachers

http://www.scholastic.com/interactivewhiteboards/

The lessons provided on this site will give you a taste of the many exciting things you can do in Notebook software. You can see just how easy it is to create and deliver lessons that are interesting and interactive while reinforcing learning objectives. It includes many curriculum resources and lesson activities.

Conclusion

REFERENCES

Campbell, C., & Martin, D. (2010). Interactive Whiteboards and the First Year Experience: Integrating IWBs into Pre-service Teacher Education. Australian Journal of Teacher Education, 35(6), 68-75.

Gregory, S. (2010). Enhancing Student Learning with Interactive Whiteboards: Perspective of Teachers and Students. University of New England, 25(2).

Lawrence, E. M. (n.d.). Utilizing 21st Century Tools to Teach about Past, Present, and Future: Preparing Social Studies Teachers to Integrate Technology. Retrieved from: editlib.org/d/30822

My Place. (2012). My Place . Retrieved from My Place for Teachers: http://www.myplace.edu.au/default.asp

Nicholson, D. (2012). 20 Interactive Whiteboard Resources for Teachers. Retrieved from The Whiteboard Blog: http://www.whiteboardblog.co.uk/2009/07/20-interactive-whiteboard-resources-for-teachers/

Scholastic Inc. (2012). Teachers: Where Teachers Come First. Retrieved from Scholastic: http://www.scholastic.com/interactivewhiteboards/

Teachers Alliance. (2012). 65 Free Interactive Whiteboard Resources. Retrieved from Teachhub.com: http://www.teachhub.com/free-interactive-whiteboard-resources

Topmarks Education. (2012). The best, free Interactive Whiteboard Resources. Retrieved from Topmarks: http://www.topmarks.co.uk/interactive.aspx?cat=105