What is the interactive whiteboard?
interactive whiteboard is a large touch-sensitive screen connected
to a data projector and a computer. The projector displays the data
and images from the computer screen onto the whiteboard which can
then be controlled with a special pen or by direct touch with a
finger. In effect the interactive whiteboard acts as a large
computer screen in the classroom with the pen or finger being used
in the same way as a mouse on a computer. It thus enables teachers
to deliver lessons interactively using a variety of media,
including visuals, presentations, digital video and audio clips and
the Internet. The whiteboard enables pupils, as well as teachers,
to manipulate text and objects on the screen and to annotate over
text and pictures; such interactivity can be highly motivating.
The advent of the interactive whiteboard can be said to have
revolutionised the teaching of modern languages and revitalised the
approach of those who use it on a regular basis. The board is not a
replacement for tried and tested methodology, but an addition to
and enhancement of traditional teaching approaches.
At the touch of a pen or a finger you can manipulate text, images
and other data in a wide variety of ways which enhance teaching and
All types of media can be used
on the board, including text, images, audio and video. Also, you
can move easily between applications, which means that interactive
games, word processed documents, spreadsheets, presentations and
web pages can be accessed rapidly.
Anything displayed on screen can
be annotated over to illustrate use of language, cultural
differences, mistakes, and alternatives. Screens can be saved and
re-used in subsequent lessons, stored as a resource or printed for
use in class.
You can store whole lessons in one file or folder and can link
directly to files, images and other resources stored on the
With special electronic
voting software you can create activities which require pupils to
'vote': that is, choose the correct answer from a set of choices.
The teacher has an immediate view of the number of correct answers
and can identify areas in need of further teaching and also
individual pupils who are experiencing difficulties. This feature
is very useful as an assessment tool.