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Smart Board Problem Statements

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Our Learning Circle discussed how we would respond and refute these common negative responses to SmartBoards. Helped us to see why smartboards are an effective tool for meaningful integration of …

Our Learning Circle discussed how we would respond and refute these common negative responses to SmartBoards. Helped us to see why smartboards are an effective tool for meaningful integration of technology in the classroom.


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  • 1. SMARTBOARD PROBLEM STATEMENTS: HOW OUR TECH LEARNING CIRCLE RESPONDED
  • 2. PROBLEM: "SMARTBOARDS ARE NOTHING BUT GLORIFIED OVERHEAD PROJECTORS OR WHITEBOARDS."
    • RESPONSE:
    • What's wrong with a better version of technologies that already are effective teaching tools?
    • They are actually more interactive and offer more visual clarity than an overhead projector or whiteboard.
    • They can provide opportunities for movement and manipulation of objects and information.
    • They offer plenty of chances for teachable moments and a more efficient way to save and show information.
  • 3. PROBLEM: "SMARTBOARDS ONLY ENGAGE THE ONE CHILD WHO IS USING IT."
    • RESPONSES:
    • This is a fallacy at best. It is engaging to all in the room, even if not physically using it.
    • It is very effective as a centre. Many of us have found it a highly motivating tool in small group work or in managing split grade groupings.
    • Students want a turn and stay engaged with the highly visual quality of lessons taught utilizing the board.
    • It is also a fabulous tool for having students present their learning to the class.
  • 4. PROBLEM: "IF WE CAN'T ALL HAVE THEM, THEN NO ONE SHOULD HAVE THEM."
    • RESPONSES:
    • Most of us felt strongly that simply giving each teacher a board does not guarantee their use... and most certainly does not guarantee their effective use!
    • Many of us felt that there actually needs to be an interest, desire, and demonstration on the part of the teacher that they are willing to put in the learning and work that goes into utlizing the boards.
    • In fact, many felt that giving boards to teachers who are most willing to learn how to use them effectively was also a way to motivate those who might be resistant to learning. The modeling of effective tech integration practices is important.
    • Some of the schools are using portable boards, which some felt were anti-productive; though, blocking 4-6 week usage times was an effective solution for one school dealing with portable boards.
  • 5. PROBLEM: "SMARTBOARDS ARE GIMMICKY AND NOT WORTH THE MONEY."
    • RESPONSES:
    • On the contrary, they are a highly versatile tool, that can actual save money!! Chart paper, posters, professional books, globes, maps, and manipulatives are easily accessible on the SmartBoard... And cost much less as virtual tools!
    • Prices have gone down considerably in the past few years and there are usually deals to be had.
  • 6. PROBLEM: "SMARTBOARDS ARE GLITCHY. TOO MANY THINGS CAN GO WRONG AND DISRUPT MY LESSON."
    • RESPONSES:
    • Welcome to teaching! If you can't be adaptable, you shouldn't be a teacher.
    • Welcome to technology! There are always glitches with technology. Besides, we need to be modeling trouble-shooting and flexibility to our students.
    • This is actually an argument in favour of permanently mounted boards. Most people found the glitches were more prominent in portable boards that could be easily knocked or that relied on stability of carts.
  • 7. PROBLEM: "SMARTBOARDS ARE GOING TO BE OBSOLETE SOON."
    • RESPONSES:
    • It's not about the tool, it's what you do with the tool! The meaningful teaching and learning strategies that are enabled by the effective use of the SmartBoard are not going to be obsolete soon.
    • Technologies do come and go, but schools are very slow in replacing technology, this doesn't mean that we can't use them effectively and to engage our students in authentic and engaging learning experiences.
    • It goes beyond the board too, the use of the software is important and there are lots of applications of Notebook software that help teach students important skills such as writing, presenting, and visual aesthetic... Things that are not just fads.
  • 8. PROBLEM: "IT TAKES TO MUCH TIME TO LEARN HOW TO USE IT."
    • RESPONSES:
    • You need to start somewhere. You need to get on the bus at some point!
    • We recommend baby steps and using students and colleagues as mentors.
    • Play at home on the Notebook software first, too!