Interactive boards have made a big splash in the world of education. This splash has been felt at all levels, from primary school to University. Many countries have fully integrated interactive boards into every classroom, and those who haven’t are rushing to catch up.
An interactive board is a considerable investment. If you don’t know how to use its features well, that money will be wasted. Fortunately, interactive boards are easy to use.
Gaining some familiarity with the available features will help you to make the best choice when you start shopping around. So here are 6 essential features you should understand.
Today’s classroom is packed with technology, including smartphones, tablets and laptops. Some interactive boards allow students to interact directly with the board using these devices. They can stream and save content, making note taking much easier. At the same time, you can get them to answer questions on the board without leaving their seat – which reduces the friction from the flow of the lesson.
Students learn well when they work together as a team. What’s more, this approach has the added benefit of improving teamwork. If you want several students to work together on a problem at the same time, you will need a board that supports this feature.
Some interactive boards come with pre-installed software for core subjects. This can include online access to large volumes of interactive lessons and resources. The pre-installed software can be a timesaver unless you know that your curriculum calls for specific software. Of course, it all depends on the software supplied, so ask for a demonstration to see if it is really useful.
As a teacher, it helps if you can move around the classroom and still use the board. Most interactive boards can only take direct input using a stylus or pen (or the computer).
Some interactive boards are designed to also take input from a tablet or touchscreen which you can carry around the classroom. This allows you to interact with individual students without interrupting the flow of the lesson.
Saving and Printing
Providing access to the materials covered in class allows students to revise and apply what they have learned. When it comes to homework, or test preparation, it is essential. Some interactive boards give you the option to save the content, including any annotations you have made.
Interactive boards are intended for a range of applications, including business briefings and sales presentations. Classroom boards will be used more frequently, and will also have to deal with occasional bumps and rough treatment. In short, they must be more durable.
These are just some of the features available on modern interactive boards. The exact set of features you need will depend on how you are planning to integrate the technology into your classroom. The important point is to develop a good understanding of your requirements before you go to the interactive board manufacturers. That way, you can make sense of your options and choose something suitable.