The wonderful world of Interactive Whiteboards and MORE!

Having left this weeks session with my mind spinning with amazing and creative ideas to use within Primary schools, made me temporarily re-visit my childhood as my youthful excitement and enthusiasm took over. However taking time to re-group prompted me to go away and have an in-depth look at what’s out there and what’s available for me to utilize in schools.

Having read Helen’s blog ‘Plan-Write-Publish digitally’ I thought a good starting point would be to look into each section of the process involved with creating work digitally – planning, drafting and publishing.

A great place to start was to look at Wallwisher where children are able to discuss and share ideas for use on a project, posing questions for other members of the class to answer. Also allowing children to work from home and to resolve issues amongst themselves; gaining invaluable independence as individuals. Its simple yet so effective, see our PGCE Group C wallwisher  to see one in full swing: where we are helping each other out with our issues surrounding our blogs and other aspects of ICT. Although this is a very useful tool to use within the classroom for the ‘planning’ stage of a project/piece of work; my personal faviourite is Wordle. This programme is free to use and allows you to create colourful ‘world clouds’. In regards to classroom use this would be a perfect way for children to present ideas linked with character descritpions from a text they are covering. Take a look at one I created and see if you can guess what popular Julia Donaldson character I am describing?

Can you guess the character?

 

 If you didn’t guess, yes it was The Gruffalo.

 Moving on from programmes to support with the planning aspect, to the exciting part of the publishing and presenting side, where the final pieces of the jigsaw are put together to create wonderful massterpieces of all shapes and sizes. This is where my imagination was left to run wild…there are so many programmes out there for this purpose that my brain has only just recovered from the sheer excitement. One key aspect that seems very popular is the production of e-stories.

Queenstown Primary School in New Zealand used a programme called Storybird in their literacy lesson to write a story for others to read and enjoy. You can see their storybirds here. With thousands of pictures and topics to choose from children of all ages will love creating and designing their own storybooks that can be read over and over again. I’ve got to say it had me hooked for hours at the age of 23 so just imagine the effect it will have on a bunch of primary school children!

Create wonderful stories with lovely illustrations using Storybird!

And to think I spent hours on this one site and there  loads more out there that do exactly the same thing, programmes such as Storyjumper, BookR and Little Bird Tales. The tagline ‘capturing the voice of childhood’ sums it all up to me, I just wish I had more time to explore into the wonders that awaited me within each site.

Building on from these students have the option of using programmes such as Glogster and Animoto to take things to the next level. With the incorporation of music and video children can visually see their ideas come alive on screen for the whole world to see. Have you ever sat there in class and wondered exactly whats going through a child’s mind….well step back and see their imagination unravel. Here are some examples that do just that from Porchester Junior School.

This brings me to the end of my adventure through the wonderful world of Interactive whiteboards and beyond, I have uncovered so many useful resources that I am itching to put into practice when I start teaching. In addition to the vast ammounts that still exist out there ready for me to discover. Now its time for me to go and explore some more and experiment with the use of smart boards and the amazing things they also have to offer me.

Helen kindly created some Sqworl sets with lots of useful links for: Interactive Whiteboards, Presentation Software and Ipad Apps. Check them out!!

2 thoughts on “The wonderful world of Interactive Whiteboards and MORE!”

  1. Firstly, This is an amazing blog – it’s all colourful and exciting! I really like it.

    I have loved reading you blogpost, it has distracted me from updating my ICT policy for at least 30 minutes! You have thought carefully about each idea you have area and researched them thoroughly. I loved the examples which you have included making it wonderfully clear how you would use these technologies.

    One thing to remember with Wordles in the classroom is if you’re letting the children online to create their own (which is a fab idea!) be carefully about the ‘Gallery’. It is impossible for schools to filter what is shown there and of course there may be some things inappropriate to the age of your children. A friendly warning that they must stay on the ‘create’ page should do the trick – it may even start a conversation about the longevity of things published on the internet!

    I have also bookmarked the blogposts from classrooms showcasing their work as I’m sure my Digital Leaders will be fascinated to see these!

    Thanks for reducing my hunting time and I definitely look forward to reading more!

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