If you’re considering whether getting rid of the overhead projector or the whiteboard in favor of the SMART board then you’re probably interested in the pros and cons of the argument. I mean, you’re going to have to learn an entirely new technology and that is going to take time. Is it really worth the effort of doing so?

Well, that’s ultimately a decision every teacher and school will have to make for themselves. Still, we’re going to explore what the actual advantages of using the SMART board in your classroom so that you at least have all those facts to weigh against the effort of learning how to use these bad boys.

Sound good? Then let’s dive straight in.

The boards broaden teaching styles

On traditional boards, it was only possible for students to see what was going on. With the new Smartboards, on the other hand, they can actually reach out and touch and interact with the items on the board. In this way, they can get a much finer appreciation of what something means and why it does the things it does.

Even more importantly, by interacting with objects they can relate it to themselves – which is one of the key elements out there to getting people to really learn something. 

You have access to online resources

Whether you want to play a video that’s online, show a specific photo or even show people how to do research and find something they’re looking for, it’s all easily done via a smart board. You can even let them try themselves so that they can experience firsthand how these things are done. This makes it easier for them to do their projects or research whatever they’re working on.

Even better, you have access to a number of online resources and databases that will make it far easier to showcase what you’re teaching in a fun and entertaining way.

You can share lesson plans via the web

Okay, sure. You were always able to do that. You just went online and talked to people about what they did. You might even have been able to get their slides or their notes. The thing is, with a SMART board you can take that a step further. They can send you the stuff that will actually show up on your board and that your students can interact with.

There are now plenty of Facebook groups dedicated to SMART boards where you can ask advice and get access to special resources.

Students can work on their own devices and then project it onto the board

The ease with which people can send files and things back and forth between their own computers and the board makes it far easier to include your students into whatever activity you’re trying to do. Be it draw a giraffe, learn how to use Google Scholar to research for certain articles or to help them with writing a term paper.

In this way, you can include students who normally don’t like to speak up in class (as they don’t have to) and make sure that the slackers stay on their toes, seeing as whatever they’ve been doing will be visible to all.

It works the other way around as well. If you’ve shown something on the board, then they can pull it onto their own devices and manipulate it there. This makes it far more likely they’ll actually remember it.

They work

There millions of smart boards being used across the US and the world and overwhelmingly students and teachers find that they really add to the effectiveness of teaching, with students reporting that they were more engaged.

That is the golden grail in modern day teaching.

Last words

There are millions of smart boards in use across the US and the world as whole. More and more schools are switching over because they’re a joy to use and a pleasure for children. Even better, they’re environmentally friendly, surprisingly easy to use and can be used at whatever experience level a teacher is at as they can use pre-prepared resources or create their own lesson plans from scratch.

In this way, the teacher and the students can do things with the board based on the level they’re at and – because of the back and forth between them – get better at the subject their discussing as well as the underlying technology they’re using to discuss it.

And that’s a win-win in most people’s books.