Using the whiteboard in my lessons

Distance learning and I… we are thick as thieves. I teach and get lessons by web conferencing. I’m teacher and student at the same time. Interesting situation. During the first session IC1, we used the whiteboard, what was an eye opener for me. Time for a little experiment.

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Today I teached my class of webdesigners. It was a marathon lesson of eight hours (!) so I decided to try something new, to be (a very little) innovative. For the first time, I decided to use the whiteboard and annotation tools. I used it two times in combination with the microphone and chat.

The first time my instructions weren’t specific enough, which resulted in students writing through each others writings. I was very clear the students enjoyed the collaboration. The whiteboards, typical for many web conferencing software, provide a familiar mean to work collaborative on new ideas in the same space (Suduc et al., 2009).

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The second time I accompanied their activity with very specific instructions and questions. They had to ask themselves in which way websites get known to the people. The result was good. The whiteboard enabled a good brainstorming session, which was a really perfect start for my lesson. Benefits and uses: brainstorm and capture ideas, encourage collaboration, allows faciltator to guide and record discussion visually, encourages peers to share ideas (Clay, 2012).

I recorded a part of the lesson (unfortunately without sound):

- the whiteboard is very interesting for brainstorming sessions and can be used as an introduction to a new subject.
- the whiteboard can be used to form a conclusion. It can be used as an individual, as a group or a whole class. Groups can share their understanding with the whole class (Clarke, 2011).
- the whiteboard enables collaboration and makes students enthusiastic about a subject.
- even adults like to draw during the lesson…


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