We (Eva and I) arrived late last night and after having dinner at the hotel went straight to bed, exhausted! 7 hours and a lovely breakfast (eggs &bacon!) later, we were off to the Learning Technologies Pre-Conference event at the University of Brighton.
The topic was “Interactive Whiteboards, from Methods to Madness” and it opened with a presentation by Connie Güntelberg. I really enjoyed it, and not only because we’re practically countrymen – she’s Danish – but because it reminded me of how much fun and how useful those boards really are! We have “promethium boards” in my school, but I haven’t really been using them much – I usually just turn one on and use the pen in the same way I would chalk… I haven’t taken the time to learn how to “dazzle” my students with it – but Connie made me see the errors of my ways so from now on I promise to read up, experiment and get better ….
Here’s a photo of Connie and ı, plus my notes from her presentation:
“Get On Board Today I” by Connie Güntelberg
Why use whiteboards?
• No need for chalk or WB pens that can dry out, overhead projectors, maps, DVD players etc.
• Also no need for dictionaries, photocopies, books – everything can be stored on a computer/IWB
• Increases attention: the Ss respond positively to the visuals/color
• Less need 4 note-taking as you can save the lessons and re-use them for revision or re-teaching.
• Active participation – the Ss love using the board.
• Easy to save notes, print out and then share/collaborate (to work on later)
• One platform for everything: reading, listening, writing, speaking, viewing
• Develops Ss ICT skills
Examples of how the IWB can be used effectively:
EX 1 – Grammar: Write a collection of words on the board and also draw up a large box. Invite the Ss to come to the board and choose the nouns from a list & drag them into the box. Follow up with a discussion.
EX 2 – Listening: Provide a cloze text on the board and play the audio (ready at a click) and have the Ss fill in the blanks. Then reveal the correct answers by “erasing” the white paint that had been used to disguise the correct answers to begin with.
EX 3 – Poetry: Display a poem on the board & play the audio with a reading of the poem. Ss listen & read at the same time, circle important words, + identify verbs, nouns and adjectives by color coding them (nouns-red, verbs- blue, adjectives-green, other-black). Then use the erase function to reveal the correct answers.
EX 4 – Reading: show connections in a longer text (the example Connie showed us was a rather long poem and we also learned that the poet was also a musician too) by placing it on the board, playing the audio reading in the background, underlining words again in diff. colors depending on function and drawing lines between different parts of the text (to show connections). She also showed us how the highlighting tool could be used to draw attention important points in the text. Finally she demonstrated how the “curtain function” can be used to gradually reveal parts of the text. To top it all off she let us listen to and watch a music video featuring the poet.
EX5 – Vocabulary building: put up a picture on the board to get the kids talking… Then write the words/vocabulary on the picture itself.
EX6 - Analyze a picture/photo by circling who/what’s in the center, background etc. as the kids or the T is talking/describing it. This could be used to predict the plot in a (related) story, for questions/answers type speaking activities or as writing prompt.
EX7 – Connie demonstrated how adding sound effects to a reading of a text/poem/drama scene can make it more exciting and appealing for the Ss and also enhance meaning
EX 8 – The last example focused on the use of video on the IWB. The board makes it very easy to pause/ff/rewind by simply touching the screen with your finger (or promethium pen). It is also easy to move back and forth between the video and the text/script and even show both at the same time (i.e. you see the text but hear the audio from the film).
Like I said to begin with, it was a very nice presentation that has inspired me to want to explore IWBs further. As a bonus, I got to meet some wonderful people in the breaks as well. Here’s a photo of us having fun in a Coffee(Addict) – break:
Eva, Işıl, Burcu, Beyza, CoffeeAddict & Kristina
Here is a link
to an AMAZING list of tools/activities for whiteboards and smartboards. Check it out!