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Laurel Bay educators get smart on SMART board

By Cpl. Justin M. Boling | | August 16, 2011

Educators gathered at the Air Station Structural Fire Department here, Aug. 8, to learn how to better integrate the use of SMART Boards into the upcoming year’s curriculum.

The day-long course focused on making the educators more familiar with the device and accompanying software, so they can better implement it in the classroom.

“The one goal that we had was to get teachers to use this equipment and integrate it into the daily lesson plan,” said Dianne Talbert, a multimedia services educational consultant. “When using a SMART Board, students become more interactive with the daily lesson plan, it allows their fingers to become the mouse and actually get hands on experience from what maybe a less-than-interesting topic.”

SMART Boards are similar to a dry erase board, but with endless multi-media and learning possibilities. The technology works by syncing a computer and projector to the board, which allows the students and educators to interact with whatever is on the screen.

“There are SMART Boards in the classrooms at my school and it is really cool to write on it,” said Caitlin Ulmer, a fourth-grade student. “There are a lot of cool things that I got to do on the board and it helps me understand better.”

The SMART Exchange offers thousands of options when it comes to planning lessons including interactive games, video and three-dimensional models. All of these tools are at the disposal of the educators to aid in teaching their students.

“The SMART Board allows teachers to utilize all of the same programs they use for presentations and lessons, but with more interaction and with more options,” Talbert said.

All they really need to learn is the basics. Then, they can use the technology to meet the needs of the subject whether they are teaching science, mathematics or even music, added Talbert.

In a world fueled by people using their numerous electronic devices for entertainment and to stay connected, SMART Boards allow students to use the same type of interactive technology in learning.

“I will be using the SMART Board with my kindergarteners and I wanted to make sure that I understood it and could use it to educate them,” said Jodi Wuttke, a Gaylor Elementary kindergarten teacher. “I am very excited to see my students interact and learn using this awesome tool.”

The confidence and knowledge gained can help teachers utilize SMART Boards to allow students to draw experience and interact their way to a better education.