If a teacher is lucky enough to have a SmartBoard at their disposal, it is their responsibility to use it beyond a “glorified projector screen”. It requires a shift in thinking from the teacher’s part to see a SmartBoard not “only” as a teaching tool, but as a learning tool.
I am taking a particular look at best practices of using a SmartBoard in the World Language classroom. My interest lies in how to best teach language teachers to go beyond a “drill and kill” vocabulary-translation type exercise and to use the SmartBoard in a way that allows students to experience the target language. In order to be able to use a SmartBoard with more than lower level thinking skills (remembering) involved, the teacher will have to have basic skills in order to manipulate and existing notebook fileÂ or create new personalized ones.
While there are many notebook files being shared for commonly taught languages such as Spanish and French, there is a lack of examples for languages such as Hebrew, Chinese, Russian or Arabic. Partly because of difficulty with the non-latin alphabet, partly because the are just “less commonly taught” languages.
What are the most important SmartBoard skills for these ‘less commonly taught” world language teachers to learn? What are the basic skills so they can tweak notebook files that don’t work perfectly for their students? What are the skills they need to ultimately create their own files ?
1. Take a look at the main toolbar.
Become familiar with
- moving between pages (slides)
- creating new pages (slides)
- opening and saving notebook files
- copying slides or objects
- full screen/split screen
- selection pointer
- bucket fill
2. Organizing Content in slides/pages and groups
- Interactive and multimedia
- Notebook files and pages
- Background and themes
4. Object manipulation
- drag and drop
5. Screen Capture Tool
Drag the cross hair across the area of the screen that you would like to capture.
- write in your target language in another program and insert into notebook to use as any other object
- capture an image of text in your target language and insert into notebook to manipulate further
6. Video Capture Tool
Click on red button to start recording.
- record in your target language
- share and review lessons or recorded stories with your students
7. DownloadÂ and open someone else’s notebook file
- SmartBoard Jewish Educational Database
- SmartBoard Exchange- Search for the name of your target language to see if any pre-made notebooks are available
- Make sure that your downloaded file has the “.notebook” extension. If it doesn’t try to rename the file by adding the extension manually in Finder or Explorer
- Tweak individual pages to customize learning for your student
8. Share your created notebook files with other teachers of your target languages
- Upload the file to your blog
- Send file as e-mail attachment to colleagues or listserve
- Offer to share files as you participate in conferences, workshops or webinars
- Submit the notebook file to a database -
What are some skills you would consider important for a World Language teacher to learn in order to create, tweak and use the SmartBoard software to bring their target language to life.