Saturday, January 22, 2011

Using Animations on Your Smartboard

This is a guest post from TeachStreet. TeachStreet is a website dedicated to providing online and local classes as well as connections to reliable math tutors and science tutors.

Although interactive whiteboards make it a whole lot easier to draw, erase and reposition images on a screen, there are may other advantages to using them in your classroom. One of these is they allow teachers to insert and use Flash animations to make content come alive! The real advantage is that the whiteboards provide animations and interactive activities that regular whiteboards can’t provide.

Flash animations are simple animations created using Adobe Flash software. Many concepts that appear as static images in a textbook or handout can be brought to life or made interactive using animation . Below are some concepts that can be taught effectively on your interactive whiteboard using Flash animations.
  • Rotational Symmetry - You could use your interactive whiteboard to explain the concept the old fashioned way (you know, by bisecting the same shape several times at different angles). Or, you could take advantage of a whiteboard’s animation features and show a spinning shape, demonstrating in real-time just what rotational symmetry is. The animations on this page, for example, take the capital letter “N” and the capital letter “H” and spin them, showing in a clear way that the shapes can rotate less than a full turn and still appear the same. Of course, a teacher could do this with a power point presentation, but the difference here is that the students are involved. They press the button to turn the shape, and thus they are more engaged with the material than they would be looking at slides.
  • Representing Decimals - Flash animations also provide added interactivity. Decimals, for example, can be a difficult concept for some young students to grasp. This decimal grid, which initially shows a square divided into ten parts, shows in a visual, interactive way, just what 0.7 or 0.4 means in practical terms. When they push the button to change the grid from tenths to hundredths, they’ll instantly see how 0.4 and 0.40 are exactly the same number.
As you can see, an interactive whiteboard isn’t just a handy way to quickly draw and erase on a big screen, nor is it just an easy way to display PowerPoint presentations or YouTube videos to your class. The animations and interactivity that the whiteboards provide are a great way to get your students involved. And when students get involved, they learn.

Photo By: Ebeam

1 comment:

Jamie said...

Love this blog. Always looking for great technology ideas to use in may classroom. Look forward for more.