Mr P's SMART Board

One teacher's record of the implementation of a SMART Board Interactive whiteboard into a primary school classroom. For links see the Simply Science FURL. For science education try Simply Science site. For ICT check out My Other Blog. For one with the lot then go to my Suprglu archive.

Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Out Of The Mouth Of .......

Sometimes, (if you listen well enough), the children we work with give you some really telling insights into how to teach them. Today I was let into a really neat notion. We had in our morning chats begun talking about veins in plants which led to a discussion on veins in animals and then to hearts and circulation etc. Over recess I quickly located a number of Flash animations of the human heart in action. As with most animations, each only showed part of the process so I deemed it prudent to have a look at a number of such animations. It was in the process of viewing them that one of the students piped up that this particular one was not right because all the chambers were contracting and relaxing together as opposed to the previous one where there was an up and down pattern. Instantly, (well sort of instantly :) I realized that here was the real teaching point of this exercise. Straight away I switched from me being the "teacher" explaining what was happening to allowing the children to learn by commenting on and contrasting the ways in which each of the animations differed. Soon the children were deriving their own questions and answering amongst themselves. Maybe this is one of the more enabling aspects of the IWB, that we can together explore a range of alternate learning experiences side by side and contrast and critically examine each for what they have to offer and what they choose to omit.

As well as teaching, I am also trying to achieve my Masters in Education. Tonight when I went to my usual Tuesday class I was pleasantly informed that next term my supervisor and two others of her colleagues from Uni were coming all the way down the highway to check out our SMART Boards in action.

Oh as we were working away today, the principal came past showing a prospective family through the school. They looked most impressed when they came past with the board in full display. (Maybe I should rig up a system whereby the boss can let me know when he is on the "show the school" visits so we can "wow" some more parents :).


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