Friday, 11 April 2008

The IWB Challenge: Week 1

As mentioned in my previous post , I have decided to take Jess McCulloch's IWB challenge, trying to use my whiteboard in at least 2 different ways each week.
I have had a technically challenging week with a couple of loose connections causing chaos with the development of my project.

On Monday, I used the board with a Powerpoint presentation to play traditional games like noughts and crosses. Students are split into two teams and come to the board to play the game. They have to identify an item of vocabulary, say it correctly or make a sentence with that particular word. I order to get the O or X, the pronunciation has to be perfect. What I like about the way I play that game is that it is collaborative. It does not really matter who comes to the board as the rest of the team has to help and a "team decision" needs to be reached for each square that is chosen for a O or X.

On Tuesday, I decided to use a Youtube link to develop reading and listening skills and provide an authentic stimulus to our Food topic. This is when my sound started to be unreliable...

On Thursday, I organised a game to focus on the spelling of expressions used to talk about holidays (in French). It was presented as one Powerpoint slide with pictures and the phrases partly written with *** in them and another one with the phrases fully written out (to be displayed for correction).

The students, split into 2 teams, had to come to the board in turn to write out the missing letters. The team was allowed to make amendments for their own team as the game developed and I was pleasantly surprised at how competitive some of them were becoming, trying to ensure the correct accents were written out.

This was also the start of a very interesting conversation about accents, their purpose, their sound and their link with etymology e.g. How the "s" from the original Latin word becomes a circumflex accent in modern French.

Finally, on Friday (today), after an attempt at using the board to brainstorm environmental issues in Spanish, my IWB turned into a projector, losing its interactivity and had to be seen to. Although the brainstorm worked quite well, I was unable to save the students' contributions as the board lost its interactivity after some of their ideas were added to a Powerpoint slide with a spider diagram on it.

My target for next week is to use the Smartboard software!


Adam said...

Sounds like you needed a lot of patience. Technology is great but when it breaks down...

Andrea Henderson said...

Thanks for giving me inspiration for a new personal goal! Your weekly summary is very helpful. I'm going to start by making summaries in my plan book with the goal of eventually placing them on my blog. Merci beaucoup and greetings from Texas!

Jess McCulloch said...

What great activities. You've given me a couple of great ideas, so thanks for that! Bummer about the board losing its interactivity. Very annoying.
I'm really looking forward to reading about what you do next week with the Notebook Software. That's a good thing to aim for, I may do the same. Thanks for joining this challenge with me. I think it's going to be really useful. I'm off to an IWB support group meeting tomorrow night so hopefully will come away with some new ideas from that.
More later!

widged said...

Great activities. Nice ways to induce a bit of healthy competition (understand engagement) without compromising on language accuracy.

On " organised a game to focus on the spelling of expressions used to talk about holidays (in French). "

Just being curious. I don't have access to a whiteboard.

There is mention of youTube and then the sound starting to be capricious. Do learning activities in Flex or Flash (embedded in a browser) play nicely on whiteboards?

If yes, then there is a gallery of web apps that may help some of you meet the challenge at:
widgets and web apps for education