Get in the zone with SMART Boards
An estimated one-third of Canadian classrooms are equipped with interactive whiteboards, the majority of which are Smart Boards. However, the technology has limited usefulness without appropriate and engaging content — something TVO had been hearing from teachers. In response, the Ontario public broadcaster recently launched a series of 10 Smart Board lessons, which teachers can download free of charge from tvoparents.com/tvokidsteacherzone and from Smart Exchange’s exchange.smarttech.com.
Covering math, social sciences, language arts and science, the lessons were developed with an on-staff educator and link specifically to Ontario curriculum strands for K–6. Each has been tested with children in their classrooms.
The Smart Board lesson plans are outlined in a step-by-step format that lists what students will learn, as well as which of the embedded multimedia resources to use, and in which order. Wish you could customize one of the ready-made lessons? You can easily add and alter the whiteboard resources. For example, in the science lesson on simple machines — which is preloaded with photos of a ramp, wheel, axle and dolly — you can upload photos of additional machines you’d like to discuss with your class, such as a pulley.
If you’re new to using a Smart Board, you can watch online tutorials, hosted by Mark Sykes, OCT, a TDSB teacher and former TVO on-camera personality (you’ll recognize him in some of the fun, three-minute videos that kick off each lesson).
For help after school, TVOKids Homework Zone (homeworkzone.tvokids.com) is a rich resource of practice sheets, teacher-led video lessons (such as tricks for remembering how to spell words) and study tips. It’s all linked to the Ontario curriculum, free and searchable by subject.
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