SPARK SMART ART: The Wonder of Interactive Whiteboards in the Elementary Classroom
National Art Education Association
San Diego, CA
March 30, 2014
PaigeVitulli, Associate Professor
University of South Alabama
College of Education
There are various brands of interactive white boards, a
combination of a whiteboard, computer and projector
SMART BoardTM was first introduced by Smart
Technologies in 1991, and combine the functionality of a
whiteboard, computer, and projector into a single system.
Children can perform all mouse and keyboard functions,
use digital ink to write over documents or Web sites, and
access or produce information by simply touching the
SMART’s touch-control feature takes advantage of
children’s natural, intuitive movements and innate desire
to touch and is not limited to the touch of a finger or hand.
Paint brushes, tennis balls, and other non-abrasive
pointers may be used to meet a diversity of motor skill
The simple operation empowers our youngest
learners to independently navigate the system as they
engage in multi-sensory learning experiences, often
collaborating and communicating with peers since the
large work area invites socialization.
As an added bonus, the board’s surface is virtually
indestructible and easily cleaned with a damp cloth.
A student’s interaction
with a whiteboard is
more meaningful when
and new information.
Three features inherent in interactive whiteboards have a statistically
significant relationship with student achievement
The first is the learner-response device—handheld voting devices that students
use to enter their responses to questions.
A second feature is the use of graphics and other visuals to represent
A third feature is the interactive whiteboard reinforcer—applications that
teachers can use to signal that an answer is correct or to present information in
an unusual context.These applications include dragging and dropping correct
answers into specific locations, acknowledging correct answers with virtual
applause, and uncovering information hidden under objects.
Three features inherent in interactive whiteboards have a
statistically significant relationship with student achievement
The first is the learner-response device—handheld voting devices that students use
to enter their responses to questions.
A second feature is the use of graphics and other visuals to represent information.
A third feature is the interactive whiteboard reinforcer—applications that teachers
can use to signal that an answer is correct or to present information in an unusual
context.These applications include dragging and dropping correct answers into
specific locations, acknowledging correct answers with virtual applause, and
uncovering information hidden under objects.
Some potential pitfalls in using the technology:
Using the voting devices but doing little with the findings.
Not organizing or pacing the content well.
Using too many visuals. Digital flipchart pages were awash with visual
stimuli; it was hard to identify the important content.
Paying too much attention to reinforcing features. For example, when
teachers who had worse results with the technology used the virtual
applause feature to signal a correct answer, the emphasis seemed to be on
eliciting the applause rather than on clarifying the content.
The unfortunate reality is that while they have become common in many schools,
they are often used as glorified projector screens.
All of the sites listed below not only have great resources for your particular software
and vendor, but they also have forums, blogs and other community features that
allow you to connect with other educators using the same products as you.
Promethean Planet - Download interactive “flipcharts,” search through
interactive web links and find images, sounds and movie resources in
downloadable resource packs for Promethean ActivInspire software.
SMART Exchange - Download SMART “notebooks,” connect with other teachers
and find lessons tied to your standards.You can also create notebooks
online using the SMART Express site and then save them directly to your
WizTeach Share - A fledgling teacher community for those using the interactive
WizTeach software. Download lessons, contribute lessons you’ve made yourself
or visit the forum to discuss with other teachers.
Engage students in responding to visual representations using the magic pen feature.
Marc Chagall’s I in theVillage is an intriguing
and colorful work of art to share with
students of all ages.When first showing this
artwork to children, you may ask open-ended
questions such as: “What title would you give
this work of art?” or “If the artist were in the
room, what would you ask him?” During this
initial phase of exploration, information
about the artist, title or content, can be
hidden from view using a screen shade
SMART Board’s screen shade feature allows content to be exposed gradually.
You may guide students in identifying
examples of lines, shapes, forms, colors, or
even specific content which they are
discussing by allowing them to use the Magic
Pen to draw directly on the art displayed on
the SmartBoard.These marks will disappear
in a matter of seconds as the discussion
When a closed circle is drawn
using the Magic Pen, the
enclosed area will be
spotlighted. This enables the
teacher to select the specific
content or feature being
discussed and compels the
learners to focus on the aspect
being spotlighted. Further,
letting children draw the
spotlight will instantly transform
a traditional discussion into an
engaging I-Spy activity.
Drawing a closed
on the art
observation of a
This website has a list of great interactive educational websites.This link will take
you specifically to the visual arts list. I have not tried them all out but my personal
favorites areThe Rennaissance Connection, ArtEdventures, and A.Pintura: Art
NGA Kids JUNGLE Interactive http://www.nga.gov/kids/zone/jungle.htm
Create an imaginary landscape with NGAkids JUNGLE. Mix and match the animals,
control the weather and lighting conditions, or construct flowers, trees, and plants.
An "AUTO" button generates random compositions, so you can sample program
options and experiment with special effects as a starting point for your own
designs.This Shockwave interactive is intended for children of all ages. JUNGLE is
inspired by the paintings of French artist Henri Rousseau.
Mr. Picassohead http://www.picassohead.com/create.html Create your own Picasso
Jackson Pollock http://www.jacksonpollock.org/ Create splatter-paint images in the
style of Jackson Pollock
Kaleidescope Painter http://www.permadi.com/java/spaint/spaint.html Create
This activity allows the user to generate a polygon that will repeat without
overlapping across a plane.
Starting from a rectangle, triangle or hexagon, the user bends the lines of the
polygon, creating a new polygon.The user can choose several different colors to
enhance the pattern, and can observe the different effects that colors have on
My Oats http://www.myoats.com/create.aspx
My oats is a community where people create designs using an online drawing
application.These designs can be rated, downloaded, and archived.
MoMa Destination Modern Art http://www.moma.org/interactives/destination/
This site takes learners through an animated and interactive galactic fantasy
exploring modern art.
Art Pad http://artpad.art.com/artpad/painter/
This is an online program where learners can create their own art.