The $2 Interactive Whiteboard

Yes, you read that correctly. The TWO DOLLAR interactive whiteboard.

But first…

The $2,000 interactive whiteboard

While watching the video, count how many times the kids are interacting with each other while using the board. Mouse over here for the answer. But I guess that’s OK, because, according to one teacher, “It really does cut down on behavior problems ’cause they’re really motivated and interested to sit and look at the board and pay attention.” Is that what good teaching is?

Before you jump to the conclusion that I am some technology-hating Luddite, I want you to know that I love technology. I train other teachers how to use technology effectively. In my physics lessons, I use technology with my students, but only when the pedagogy demands the technology.

I have a SMART Board in my classroom. I’m a SMART Exemplary Educator. My waves lesson on the SMART Exchange website has over 400 500 600 700 downloads — the most of any high school physics lesson. There was an article written about me when I first got my SMART Board. Some students say I’m the best SMART Board user in my school. But no one said the SMART Board helped them understand physics.

According to this Washington Post article, some educators question if electronic interactive whiteboards raise achievement:

As he lectured, Gee hyperlinked to an NBC news clip, clicked to an animated Russian flag, a list of Russian leaders and a short film on the Mongol invasions. Here and there, he starred items on the board using his finger. “Let’s say this is Russia,” he said at one point, drawing a little red circle. “Okay — who invaded Russia?”

One student was fiddling with an iPhone. Another slept. A few answered the question, but the relationship between their alertness and the bright screen before them was hardly clear. And as the lesson carried on, this irony became evident: Although the device allowed Gee to show films and images with relative ease, the whiteboard was also reinforcing an age-old teaching method — teacher speaks, students listen. Or, as 18-year-old Benjamin Marple put it: “I feel they are as useful as a chalkboard.”

The word “interactive” for the the $2,000 electronic interactive white board (eIWB) means interaction with a piece of hardware to manipulate virtual objects on a screen. And most eIWBs only interact with one person at a time.

The $2 interactive whiteboard

The word “interactive” for the $2 IWB means interaction among students. Students are working together to collectively construct knowledge, explain their reasoning processes, and get feedback from the teacher and each other. Students are interacting with each other in small groups when preparing the whiteboards. Then they interact with the whole class when they present and field questions from the class and the teacher. At all times, the teacher can see and hear student thinking and challenge them with questions. This process is called “whiteboarding.”

So, what are some of the benefits of whiteboarding with $2 whiteboards?

  1. Encourages students to think, question, solve problems, and discuss their ideas, strategies, and solutions.
  2. Allows students to articulate their preconceptions so the teacher can confront and resolve them.
  3. Allows for regular classroom and evaluation and interpretation of evidence. Students come to know not only what they know, but how they know it.
  4. Provides opportunities for students to learn from and correct their own mistakes, and to learn from the successes and mistakes of others as they check and critique each others work.
  5. Helps create a culture of questioning. (<– go read this!)
  6. Allows for the discussion of student-generated ideas rather than the teacher merely presenting information.
  7. Engages students in a collaborative learning community.
  8. Promotes strongly coherent conceptual understanding while decreasing traditional lecture.
  9. Provides opportunities for students to teach one another, practicing using the language of the science to one another in order to develop personal meaning.

(List compiled from Whiteboarding in the Classroom and Whiteboarding.)

In my year-end survey, my students frequently comment about how the whiteboarding process was an effective teaching method for them. For example:

The whiteboard discussions are different from the traditional “put your answers on the board” in that we can really see what went wrong and explain our understanding. I feel as though we learn through the explanations we have to give and the little question prompts you give us.

Districts spend tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of dollars on electronic interactive whiteboards, plus thousands more for professional development to show teachers to use them in order to write, move, reveal, and resize virtual objects. How about taking all that money and spending it on professional development for learning how to engage students in Socratic dialogue, effective questioning, reformed science teaching methods like modeling instruction, and other inquiry learning methods? How about using the money for substitutes so an entire department can go and watch other teachers using these instructional methods in other schools?

Teachers should be spending their precious lesson planning time designing lessons to engage kids mentally and push them to higher levels, not creating flashy Powerpoints.

What skills do we want our students to have when they leave our classrooms? How to use a piece of technology? Or how to work collaboratively, ask great questions, think critically, and problem solve?

Please, instead of thinking about how to get your students to interact with a $2,000 electronic whiteboard, think about how you can get your students to interact with each other using a $2 whiteboard.

Where should we place our time and money?

Here?

Or here?

credit: whiteboardsusa.com

Resources for whiteboarding

Where to buy them:

  • Home Depot and Lowes sell large 4’x8′ sheets of white shower board or tile board for about $12 each. You can have it cut at the store into 6 pieces that are 24″x32″ in size. Hence, the $2 whiteboard. If you say you’re a teacher, they may do the cutting at no extra charge.
  • Whiteboards USA sells the 24″x32″ boards for $9 each with rounded edges and a handhold cut. (I am not affiliated in any way this company.)

How to use them (including academic references):

Endnotes

If anyone knows of a lesson where the pedagogy demands an electronic interactive whiteboard, let me know. I’m talking about the $2000 physical IWB itself. If you can do it with just the computer, software, and projector, it doesn’t count. I do think those are a necessity for many classrooms.

I like my SMART Board because it is convenient for ME. The ability to save digital ink is useful to ME. Yes, eIWB are just tools. And, yes, what you do with the tool matters. But the things that are most effective for student learning do not require an electronic whiteboard.

I realize that you can have both types of whiteboards in class at the same time (my classroom does). I also realize that most teachers don’t use their eIWB everyday or all period and shift to student-centered instruction. But let’s not kid ourselves into thinking it improves student learning.

Update: Whiteboards vs. Chart Paper

Please check out this great follow-up post by Thomas Ro. In it, he talks about how student collaboration dynamics are different when using whiteboards instead of chart paper, including “the power of the eraser.” Students are more likely to take risks with their work when using whiteboards and more students get involved.

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213 responses to “The $2 Interactive Whiteboard

  1. Pingback: Tweets that mention The $2 Interactive Whiteboard « Action-Reaction -- Topsy.com

  2. Whiteboarding rocks. I made a set of 18 of them for my classroom before last school year (inspired by modeling instruction). I used them for many different things over the course of last year. My students will often grab them while collaborating on a project to plan or diagram ideas. Here’s my blog post about whiteboarding: http://trice25.edublogs.org/2009/10/05/modeling-instruction-whiteboard-sessions/

  3. Thank yo so much for tweeting this article to me. I just got a promethean board in my room and want to do it right the first time. I will thanks to this post, good things to keep in mind and good things to avoid.

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  5. I also have & use both whiteboards (Smart & bathroom panels).
    they are great for problem solving and sharing solutions so you can see how someone else will solve. The markers are expensive and my students love to draw on them. I am thinking they do not get enough drawing/coloring elsewhere (we do some work with crayons in class (high school geo & physics).

  6. Good, honest post from one who knows! I have had the samr thoughts about my own smartboard & wonder if they’ll be around in 10-15 years?

  7. Pingback: Treasure Chest–Discovery, Google, Freeware, ePortfolios, Whiteboards & Much More | Tech the Plunge

  8. Jason Waskiewicz

    Thank-you! My school embarked on a project of equipping every single classroom with an IWB. I managed to get myself at the end of the list to get one, but it’s coming. I’ve been working hard to get away from the lecture model of teaching and I’ve been buying needed lab equipment in bits and pieces for years. To equip my classroom with one IWB would be equivalent to 2 years of requisitions! I’m glad to find I’m not the only Physics teacher who would prefer to spend that money in other ways.

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  10. Tyler: My students use them the same way, too. I’ve seen classrooms in college where the walls were whiteboards…it really promoted collaboration and showing reasoning! If you can ever get yourself to a Modeling workshop, go for it! You’ll have a blast!

    Sharon: No problem. I’m glad you found it helpful. Electronic whiteboards aren’t evil, just remember to focus on student learning!

    Paul: What do you use crayons for? I am thinking using colored pencils. I want to have the kids draw color coded free body diagrams and motion maps for next year. I think it will help kids make distinctions between all the different arrows they draw. It’s visual, plus kids have to think about which color they are going to use and why before they begin drawing. I might turn that into a full-fledged post once school starts….

    Becky: Good point! Look what happened with TI calculators: http://xkcd.com/768/

    Jason: Do you have a computer and probeware for each lab group? That is a much wiser use of tech money, in my opinion. There is solid physics education research showing significant student learning gains when using probeware. That research led to the creation of the Real-Time Physics curriculum and Interactive Lecture Demonstrations. The electronic whiteboard is simply a teacher convenience, not a learning enhancer. And thanks for linking me in your latest blog post…you make many excellent points!

  11. Great post — I learned how to teach (about 15 years ago) using $2 interactive whiteboards and have used them ever since. I use extensively in my university courses and many of my PD sessions. As you wrote, they are a great tool to help students collaboratively illustrate their understanding of concepts.

    The craze for putting $2k interactive whiteboards into the classroom really is sickening. I know that they can be used well, but too often it just reinforces teacher-centered instruction.

    Now, don’t get me started with clickers (I can immediately see how many students get a multiple choice question wrong) …

  12. brunsell: Clickers — That’s an upcoming post! And if “they” have to spend tech money on tech: How about some simple probeware and computer for each lab station? That’s a much better learning-to-cost ratio than an IWB.

  13. Nice post, i really enjoyed reading this, keep up the good work

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  15. Frank
    I also have colored pencils, but when doing colored drawings (more in Geo than Phys for some reason), students gravitate to the crayons. And they are cheaper. Now if we could just keep them off the floor. My Seniors (Physics) don’t use crayons much and I need to give them more opportunities to draw. I should slow down with the vectors & FBD and let them grab crayons/pencils, at least enough to do vertical/horizontal. As it is I use different colors on the SmartBoard.

    • Paul: My family went out for lunch today. The restaurant gave our kids crayangles — triangular shaped crayons which can’t roll onto the floor!

    • I’ve used another version of the $2 whiteboards a ton too but mine now have grids on the back for when the kids are graphing. I hear you on the coloring though with the geometry students! I use colors to illustrate different angles and directions and it seems to help all of the students a lot more. I was originally informed that using the individual whiteboards and colors was most helpful for special ed kiddos but I’ve seen an improvement with all of my students when I’m using them. And I bribe my students to bring me dry erase markers with small “prizes” from the dollar store.

      • Here’s what I’m thinking for color coding in physics: red = force, green = velocity, blue = acceleration, black = position. These color codes would work for motion maps, kinematic graphs, and free-body diagrams. From my experience, anything that’s helpful for special education students is beneficial to all our students!

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  17. Loved this post. As a math teacher I have made similar “whiteboards” by slipping graph paper into transparent sheet protectors (the kind that goe into 3 ring binders). I even made a little red yellow green light on the top to be able to quickly survey the kids (like with clickers but low tech).

    I like this idea of making huge white boards for colaboration. Thank you for being so specific about how to get them made.

    • Thanks, Stacy! I use both the small and large boards. I use the small boards as low-tech clickers as well, and they allow for more flexibility. Spread the word about collaborative whiteboards at your school!

  18. Frank,
    I couldn’t agree with you more. Though I’m slowly starting to use and appreciate my SB (despite its flakiness), it doesn’t foster student collaboration or interactivity in the least. Today I was letting my kids work in groups to prepare of our assessment and work out a few final misunderstandings about linearizing data, and they asked if they could use the smartboard to work through something together. I said, “sure.” They said “really?,” incredulously. “What, you’ve never used the smartboard before, I asked?” “No. They said.”

    I literally cringe when I visit fancy daycares for our -1 month old and they show off their fancy promethian smartboards and the kids gathered round. I honestly find myself wanting to replay that 1984 mac ad…

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  20. Hokey smokes!

    You convinced me to try this, and I am not looking back. Thank you!

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  23. I just want to add to the testimonials and share that I started using whiteboards last year (my 2nd year teaching) because of ASU’s modeling methods and I say if you want my whiteboards, you’d have to take them FROM MY COLD DEAD HANDS. Well, really it’s easier to buy your own for $2 each, but you know what I mean. I use them about every other day and got another one of the physics teachers on campus using them and loving them. They’re useful for so many different activities and enhance existing activities in so many ways. In its most basic uses, it actually makes “think pair share” WORK. The way “think pair share” was advertised to me in its rawest form from my credentialing classes was completely useless, and attempting it with my students during my 1st year teaching left me emotionally scarred. Whiteboards create instant accountability and facilitate discussion by leaps and bounds. Of course participation is not 100% but it’s a vast improvement. Whiteboards FTW.

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  25. Terrific article! And they’re wireless! :-)

  26. I am so psyched to see this post! I am aspiring to become a math teacher, and one of the things I have had in my mental file is an image of having a stack of whiteboards and telling the students, “Everybody plays–no benchwarming in my classroom.” I want to see everyone trying to come up with an answer and sharing and talking about it. I am so happy to see this in action. In my observations so far, teachers have mostly only used the Smartboards as electronic worksheets. I’ll be looking on your links for ideas to utilize more of the potential of the SB, too.

  27. Thank you for the final nudge I needed to take myself down to Lowe’s and buy these “interactive white boards.” I’ve been wanting to for years. Yesterday, it was amazing–two kids per board, 1 pen and lots of geometry! They loved it, I loved it. Immediate feedback and adjusting, great conversation and collaboration. Thank you. It’s a truly interactive tool.

  28. I use (used) whiteboards in my class for a variety of activities. They worked great. The problem was the students destroyed the dry erase markers within 2 weeks. I had to buy (from my own pocket) a new set for the class–which is used for 6 classes. They destroyed these 2 weeks later as well. I couldn’t afford anymore and I got rid of the whiteboards. Solutions?

    • If the markers are being destroyed after 2 weeks, I might suggest assigning numbered bags of markers and numbered boards to each group. Maybe make one group member accountable for collecting and returning the markers in good condition to you.

      I can honestly say that after 11 weeks of school I have seen no marker destruction, and my students range from 8th grade to seniors. Of course, part of that may be cultural. I do have the markers in individual baggies, but I haven’t had to number them. Contrast that with my colored pencils which are loose in a coffee can (and largely demolished).

    • I know of teachers who require their students to bring their own whiteboard marker(s) to class each day. But I do something similar to Jason’s baggies: the erasers we use store 3 markers inside them. Since switching to these, markers are less likely to be left on the floor or lost. I also have to occasionally remind some students privately about excessive doodling.

    • I have been using white boards for 15 years and have always had a terrible time with the pens. This is something about basic human nature if something doesn’t belong to you, I think. I would have a bucket of new pens for the class. Students would use them, often destroying the tips, and then throw them back into the bucket. Next time, they would scrounge around in the bucket for a “good” pen, wasting time and causing unnecessary drama.

      I tried having kids bring their own pens, but they often did not have them when needed, so I spent a lot of time scolding students for not having them.

      FINALLY, I figured it out. At the beginning of the year, everyone brings two packs of LOW ODOR pens. Put them in zip loc bags with their names on them and put all the pens for a class in a big paper grocery bag. Then several students can pass them out at the beginning of class–everyone throws them in the bag at the end of class. WOW! The school year just ended and I now have a bucket of leftover pens that some of the kids didn’t want to take with them. Even better, there were always lots of pens to use in class and no one destroyed them because they had ownership.

      If a student did not bring in the pens, I quietly made them a bag with some pens the school had bought, something that is easily done without embarassing anyone.

      I definitely recommend this!

  29. The thing that kills WB markers is leaving them uncapped for long periods of time. Slowly, this has become a pet peeve of mine, and now I can’t stand to watch a person standing at the front of the room making a point with an uncapped marker. I tell my kids to think of the WB markers as screaming when they are uncapped, and to minimize the time they are uncapped. When I see them uncapped, I tell them I can’t hear them over the screaming dry erase markers. It’s silly, but it works, and I have kids telling other kids to “stop murdering the dry erase markers.”

    Also, it’s a much greater expense, but Auspen makes awesome refillable dry erase markers. . I’m not sure I’d trust these in the hands of marker mangling students, but I love my set—huge savings in the long run.

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  32. I’m a techno-sceptic, but I don’t think your article gives the full picture. I distrust that you are a technophile to be honest. I am not a fan of the electornic whiteboards, I don’t consider them value for money, but having got one in my classroom, I have found good uses for it. It allows me to save what I write on the board without taking up my non-existent display space. It allows me to easily visually show concepts like doubling. Instead of taking all that time drawing a second group, I can just copy paste a picture of 4, so that kids can get onto doing the work themselves. The video clearly overrates it, but it isn’t as bad a tool as you’re making out. It’s the fact that it allows me to combine things I could previously only do with an OHP or a computer in the one space, which is good because I type quicker, but my kids write quicker. It’s also a lot better for display purposes than the OHP, because kids don’t have to crane their necks around the projector, we don’t have to darken the room so we can keep on working while it’s on.

    • Hi Rom, thanks for your comment. You are correct about all the nice things that an electronic whiteboard can do. I, too, find it useful for saving notes, showing simulations, and teaching certain topics like vectors. But, it’s really the software that’s doing those things. The physical $2000 board could be replaced with a $200 wireless tablet and you’d still have the same conveniences and functionality. But can anyone claim that my students now have a deeper understanding of Newton’s Laws because I can move images around on the board and bring up the notes from yesterday?

      The point I am trying to make is that we have to adjust our teaching methods. Technology can play a very important role in the shift to a student-centered classroom, but it is not the sole solution.

  33. Pingback: My 2010 edublog award nominees « Quantum Progress

  34. Recently I’ve been using these in a similar way.

    http://www.magicwhiteboard.co.uk/

    I imagine it’s nice to have a bit of durable board to work on; these are handy in that you can put them on a wall (static) and put card/paper etc on them. Not sure how long they’ll last, but mine are still going after 6 weeks…

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  40. Check out huddle boards and copy cams from Steelcase. Definitely costs more than $2 but some neat advantages for archiving and managing work from white boards.

    http://www.steelcase.com/en/products/category/worktools/boards-and-easels/huddleboard/pages/overview.aspx

  41. Great post, Frank. The benefits of whiteboarding go beyond just academic learning. By the end of the year, it always warms my heart to see my students gain confidence in themselves because they feel comfortable articulating complex ideas and expressing themselves in front of an audience. The community aspect of whiteboarding should not be understestimated.

    Also, just wanted to quickly add that a digital camera is handy for recording whiteboard work in case the discussion goes long or the students want to reference their work in the future.

    • Thanks, Paul! Have you seen http://whiteboards.posterous.com ? I agree the digital camera is handy. WB pics could be posted to course webpages for review and for absent students. I know Matt Greenwolfe from the the Modeling list-serve does this a lot — his students are actually in charge of taking the pics and uploading them to the class Moodle site.

  42. Pingback: Collaboration–the $2 Interactive Whiteboard vs. EtherPad | Catina's Blog–a place to think

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  51. Love your post and totally agree with your take on the eIWB. I’ve been struggling to find ways to use it effectively but the fact that they are only one or two touch boards really limit the interactive aspect of it. I love the whiteboarding concept (very environmentally friendly) but as a math facilitator I like to see the errors that students make since it shows me their entire thought process when solving a problem. The whiteboards allow students to conveniently erase their errors. I use chart paper (cut in half) and tell students that math is “messy”. When groups finish their solutions, some or all are posted to be discussed as a class where the authors of the solutions can share, argue, and defend their strategies. I posted an example on my blog, http://wp.me/pXAmd-1a just scroll down to the bottom of the post.

    • Hi Mr. Ro,

      Thanks for commenting! Creating a culture where “messy math” is valued is awesome. I just want to add one counterpoint, though. As part of her PhD thesis, Colleen Megowan studied different types of whiteboarding and the affect on student dynamics. Although it didn’t make it into her final thesis, she also looked at differences in student interactions when working with chart paper vs. whiteboards. She was kind enough to share her observations and I’ve posted them here: http://bit.ly/gVkMsQ

      A brief excerpt:

      When students constructed their representations on chart paper, there was more talk that was unmediated by any sort of representation before pen was put to paper–possibly because “marker on chart paper” wasn’t erasable–so a great deal of the reasoning process surrounding what was ultimately was shown was completed before much was written on the chart paper (and this was true in spite of the fact that students had been repeatedly assured that all they had to do was start over on a fresh sheet of paper–I guess maybe they preferred to get it ‘right’ the first time). In addition, in the semester’s worth of MZ’s geometry class video that I transcribed, I observed that the “chart paper writer” was almost always the same person each time–sometimes it was the person who drew the best, or the one with the clearest writing, often it was the one who was most assertive in seizing the marker. This influenced what appeared on these chart paper representations. It was that writer’s “version” of the group’s thoughts (see the quote below regarding the Power of the Marker).

      It was different with whiteboards–students began writing right away. They started and stopped and erased all the time, and the representations that ultimately appeared evolved as the conversation unfolded. Although there were still some group members that did not write, there were many more instances of multiple students writing/drawing on the whiteboard in each episode. In addition, students who never wrote did occasionally erase what others wrote, or suggested that what others wrote should be erased and re-represented.

      • Hi Frank,

        Thanks for the reply. I found the whiteboard vs. chartpaper rationale very interesting. I’m going to share this with my fellow math facilitators.

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  53. Where are all the biology teachers who are using white boards and sharing these kinds of ideas? Use of the whiteboards and the associated student interaction and engagement really resonates with me. I would enjoy finding out how others take the principles and content of biology and bring students into an active dialogue that facilitates understanding and learning. Help?

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  56. Great post. I am sending your blog link to all those teachers (at Cochin, Kerala, India) I trained..

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  65. Great to see another tech savvy person talking about how to use and/or misuse technology. My director looked at me like I was nuts when I said I didn’t need or want a fancy interactive whiteboard. Couldn’t agree more with you post – the focus on the interaction between the students is crucial.

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  67. Great post! I’ve always felt that the SMART board was a little limited in regards to student engagement. I’m trying to get away from the lecture and moving more towards student experience.

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  71. Crayola now sell whiteboard crayons, teaching buddy loved them. I think this is an awesome idea and am going to see if I can hunt down some white board stuff! Not sure where, I sure there Australian stockists of such things!
    I do love my eiwb, but reflecting after reading this, my 6/7 class is not doing enough collaboration and participation.
    Thanks for posting this, I know where to change my teaching practices and not rely on that shining glowing board!

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  76. At last! Someone who makes sense. Technology for the sake of technology is completely bogus. These are tools… tools have a purpose and need to be used to construct something… in our case: learning.
    Most leadership in schools in my area think that if you buy data projectors, IWBs or computers that technology is happening in a meaningful constructive way at their schools. Most teacher use (or get their students to use) word, powerpoint and google…not much beyond that.
    I am all for using technology for authentic learning (see my blog http://cyberspaced.blogspot.com) , while my hidden adgenda is getting students to use technology for living more effectively and to promote life long learning.
    Cheers
    Cyberspaced

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  78. Looking back on this again now that I’ve got my own student whiteboards (which the first years want to borrow all the time and the 2nd years are jealous of). I finally watched the video at the top of this post, and was intrigued by the first young boy who goes up to the board. Noticed how he pokes at it once then walks away, while his teacher holds his wrist, pulls him back, and pushes a marker into his hand. Now, I realize it’s a special education classroom, and the teacher might have needed to do that whether he was using a whiteboard marker or a pencil or a paintbrush. But that’s your point, isn’t it? It didn’t seem like strong evidence for the superiority of the eiwb.

    I was also really struck by the mesmerized looks on the students’ faces, and the way their body language reminds me of kids watching their favourite Disney movie for the 15th time. On one hand, we decry the hypnotic effect of screentime. On the other hand, we claim that more of it in classrooms ipso facto improves learning. Sure, poking an eiwb is slightly less mind-numbing than watching a teacher write, for the one student who does the poking. Are our standards really that low?

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  81. Your post is great and I couldn’t agree with you more. Although, I am quite a fan of techonology, the time it takes to make flashy flipcharts is a waste when I could be working to develop more engaging lessons that allow for collaboration. I really appreciate that you are a self-professed fan of technology, yet see interactive whiteboards as a waste of time. I have found students learn best when working in groups and testing their ideas with the peers (big fan of $2 whiteboards…I need to get bigger ones like yours).

    I found the news broadcast fascinating, as the teachers interviewed we so enthralled with their interactive whiteboards. I haven’t met too many teachers who could sell the product as well as they do.

    As you said, interactive white boards are only interactive with the user. I have found them great in posting notes, highlighting the use of simulations, or guiding them through instructions prior to an activity. I think the best tool I have is still my document camera. Quick and easy, nothing fancy, but gets the job done.

  82. I purchased some inexpensive white boards at a teaching supply store and I use them almost everyday. I love them for reading group and math time. Very effective teaching tool!

  83. Pingback: Buying Whiteboards in the Lower Mainland « Renovating My Classroom

  84. Pingback: IWB cost/benefit – what other alternatives do we have? | Integral Learning

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  89. What a thought provoking post. Where should we place our money??? That is very true it is a question that does require lots of reasoning. Thanks for the thought provoking blog.

  90. Pingback: The Tower | Action-Reaction

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  92. Thank you for posting this on your blog, Frank. I’ve been teaching physics for 23 years, and I keep finding new ways to do it thanks to innovative people like you. I just finished cutting by shower board, and by the way mine are $1.83 interactive white boards! At Menards, the shower board is $10.55 plus tax.
    I don’t know how you find time to do it, but please keep posting these great ideas.

  93. This post has impacted almost everyone in my department! My colleague and I are using the boards in physics and earth science and the chemistry folks want to use the boards also. Unfortunately, we have purchased so many showerboards at the local Home Depot that their saw is broken! They will not tell me when it will be repaired! Argh! We need more boards. Thank you for your posts and inspiration to new students (and old teachers) of physics!

  94. Pingback: The $2 Whiteboard « Walden School

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  96. Pingback: Another blog about physics teaching? | Think like a physicist…

  97. Pingback: The $2.99 Interactive Whiteboard :: Study Designed

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  99. I’m sharing your post in some new teacher training sessions Frank. Hope they feel comfortable enough to comment on it!

  100. Pingback: Leestips (1) | voor de klas

  101. Pingback: PERSONAL: The $2,000 or $2 Whiteboard? :: Study Designed

  102. I love whiteboarding! it’s great to see someone else mentioning it. I made up a set for our Science department, and they really work ! Thanks for this post. (I have written about them on my blog also, but I really like how you have compared them to an interactive whiteboard, which personally, I am not so convinced about).

    The problem with our whiteboards, is that they are HEAVY….. I think I need to order some new ones.

    http://gjismyp.wordpress.com/2011/04/19/white-boarding/

  103. Pingback: Goodbye Paperless Classroom, Hello Collaboration « Bowman in Arabia

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  107. Pingback: Interactive Whiteboards: innovation for the future or a revamp of the past? | melmolinaro

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  112. We made the Wii version of the board that was around $100.00. It was obvious upon using it that this was kind of back to the teacher or one student up at the board and engaged. I love the whiteboard idea!

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  117. Reblogged this on Para la clase de Física. and commented:
    Este post, es imperdible. Si bien está en inglés, y los videos insertados también lo están, lo que quiero mostrar son dos cosas: una, el blog “Action-Reaction”, quizá el mejor de los que he visto en Internet sobre enseñanza de la Física, y segundo, la profunda discusión sobre los “recursos” importantes para diseñar una clase de Física.

  118. Frank: I am a Physics Teacher from Uruguay, (I can read in english, but I am mot very good at writing, please forgive me for my language mistakes). Last week I started reading your blog, and I think it is one of the best I’ve ever read. I reblogged this post in my blog, not only for the post itself, but also for encourage other teachers in Uruguay to read (and follow) your blog. Congratulations Frank!, and Thank you! It is a great contribution to the world of teaching Physics.
    Alejandro

  119. Pingback: The $2 Interactive Whiteboard | Essential Educator

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  121. Pingback: Easy Reading for Physics Teachers | Renovating My Classroom

  122. Pingback: I Love My New Whiteboards! | Talking Physics

  123. Two things…
    I have an IW and hardly every even turn it on…Though for some lessons after the kids have done stuff in groups they use it to show others their work.
    Lots of my kids use dry erase markers on their desks to work on problems. In class today they were playing math games with coordinate plane stuff and keeping track of each round on their desks.

  124. Pingback: My Fallback Plan « ET 501 – Applications of Educational Technology

  125. Thx for information.

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  141. Loved this blog. I have small boards that I used at home and brought to classroom. Kids love it! But you have inspired me to get more so that I have smaller groups so ideas can really be heard and kids have to truly participate – not sit off to the side while other take over the work.

  142. Pingback: Thing 4: Voices in the Blogosphere

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  155. Wish me luck! I’m going to try a modified $2 iwb solution. I went Home Depot and several 4’x8’jpegs panel boards cut in half. So, I’m giving each group of 3the or 4 students a 4’x4′ piece. We’ll be doing lots of think/pair/share! Except it’s the not pairs. Also, it’s panel board that’s my $12. The tile bosrf actually has designs on it that look like tiles for about $20. So, my solution is really a $6 iwb!

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  157. Pingback: Day 0: “No Front, No Back” or “The Writing On The Wall | KB 180

  158. Pingback: My Favorite Mega White Boards | I Speak Math

  159. A fresh take on the Whiteboard, so many Smart board teachers sing their praise; it is refreshing to step back and use less costly equally versatile tools.

  160. That is absolutely something I want to try in a classroom some day!

  161. Pingback: Des tableaux individuels effaçables à 8 $ (Bon, c’est plus cher que 2 $, mais ça en vaut la peine !) « Enseigner avec TNT

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  170. Pingback: Promoting Intellectual Quality with an IWB | molly20120273

  171. Pingback: Interactive whiteboard | Technology world

  172. LOVE this idea – I’ve been using my smartboard for 7 years, loved it, but it left me pinned at the had of the class. This + my ipad/doceri/projector combo will let my kids work but still be able to work digital content into lessons.

  173. Pingback: End of Year Thoughts 2013 | PPerfect Squares

  174. Pingback: Ed thoughts - Blogging in Education – Thing 4

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  176. Yeah, I have to say I was never sold on the whole interactive white boards – they seemed to be just as interactive as a child going to the front and writing an answer on a regular Whiteboard, but the ‘whiteboarding’ idea sounds completely different.
    I’ve not heard of it before so this is quite interesting. Cheers for the post.

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