No standing in the front of the class

Our school is considering an investment in Interwrite Boards for teachers.  We have roughly five teachers who already use them, as the Interwrite Pads were in one of the rounds of laptop  initiatives the teachers could sign up for.  In just searching the Internet I found a price of an estimated $600. Not bad for a device that pretty much transforms your pull-down screen into a interactive white board (via the IW pad in you hand.)

One of our teachers who used one unexpectedly had to leave his job, thus turning in his laptop, projector, and Interwrite Pad.  I was told I could use the Interwrite pad in the library.  I have played around with it, and can definitely see the potential. The very best part of using it is that you are not tethered to your laptop, but can roam around anywhere in the room.  I DETEST seeing a teacher stand at the front of the room to teach.

Our school also has one SmartBoard, and one of the new teachers (Mrs. P.) who will begin second semester has ogled it daily since she started her “workdays” before the new semester.  But it was slated to be placed in a classroom already, and when they installed it today, she came to me so very disappointed. She was hoping to campaign for it since she had used one daily in her student teaching experience.

If you know me, you know exactly what I did. I went to my closet, pulled out the Interwrite pad, and said, “Try this–I think you’ll like it better.”  She was confused, so I had her follow me to the nearest classroom where a teacher uses one. Our luck, Mr. C was gone to lunch, but I had a master key. So I went in, turned on his projector, picked up his pad, and handed it to her, saying one simple word — PLAY.

Suddenly Mrs. P had the vision for what this little $600 pad could offer her curriculum, and realized what a gift I had given her.  She ran back to her room to install and set up the Interwrite Pad. (I love young teachers who are so enthusiastic and can load, install, setup, and work most anything hardware and software wise you give them!)

Of course I returned to Mr. C’s class to confess our “breaking and entering” since his class was returning from lunch as I left Mrs. P setting up her Interwrite Pad. He was delighted that yet another teacher has the “fire” for using the hardware in their class, and forgave me for leaving his projector on–Mr. C is a green soul who is currently trying to save the world one canvas bag at the grocery store at a time, which, I might add, is not a bad trait.)

One good deed–and now I’m out an Interwrite Pad. Here’s to hoping I get another one soon!

Image Attribution:

Image:  SP4008-Large
http://www.bg-innovations.com/images/gtco/SP400B-large.jpg



8 Responses to “No standing in the front of the class”

  1.   techjulia Says:

    We have many wireless slates in our district…there are several brands out there and we have tried lots of them!
    From personal experience, I like the SMART Airliner best. If you do decide to purchase more slates, check out the SMART ones. They are even a little less expensive.
    Good luck!
    -Julia

  2.   technotuesday Says:

    Thanks Julia. I had used the Promethean brand of all externals (and loved them) while in Rock Hill, and we could opt for the Promethean brand here, but we want a device that doesn’t “require” the physical board on the wall or carts, and this seems to fit the bill. I will inquire about what you have suggested.

  3.   MaryAnn Sansonetti Says:

    Cathy, I used to use the Interwrite in when I was in the classroom. I have to admit I have been transformed since then. Interwrite is a good product but the SMART airliner rocks! There are some small differences that make a big impact.

    SMART airliners do not need a board to work. Cost is only about $300. The little things are:
    1. Icons on the airline are larger and easier to read.
    2. SMART notebook software has so many wonderful graphics, interactive media, etc. That alone makes it worth it for me.
    3. SMART notebook software is intuitive.

    Anything to help teachers engage the students is wonderful!

    One thing I used to do is if the students didn’t do their homework they couldn’t use the slate in class… Guess what homework completion sky rocketed!

  4.   technotuesday Says:

    WOW Maryann great comparison. The IWpad does not need to board either. But we are looking into what is feasible. The district has all types, which i find amazing. In my past experience districts generally select a brand for peripherals and stick w/ it. Teachers are excited though, and I do believe the slate (whatever brand we get) will transform some of their styles of teaching anyway. Thanks for the VALUABLE input. Have fun at FETC–i had a blast the two years went. I would be going again if not for Educon2.0.

  5.   mrgranito Says:

    Hey Cathy, I use the interwrite also. Not only do I love playing with it, but my kids get super excited when I use it. They all want to get their hands on it as well…I don’t know if that’ll happen.

  6.   tasteach Says:

    Hi Cathy,
    Does this mean instead of standing up the front of the class writing on the smartboard I can be doing it when wandering around the room? Yet the kids will see it on the smartboard out front. I’ll have to check into this.

  7.   technotuesday Says:

    @tasteach

    Yes–this is exactly what it means. You will be free to interact w/ your board (or pull down screen if that is all you have) and manipulate objects, click, drag, write, annotate, type, everything that you would do at your board you could do from the wireless pad (slate, or airliner, which I think is the Smartboard version.) Your kids can even use it. Its a great accessory that once you use, you will want nothing less.

  8.   José Paulo Santos Says:

    Try them all before you decide which one to buy, Cathy!
    They are all differents, so you should try it and select the ones that fit your aims…

    ;-)
    http://comingofage.ning.com

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