How to Use LCD Projectors in Education

Having an LCD projector can give you greater flexibility when teaching.

In the past, a teacher who wanted to display information for a classroom full of students had only a few options at his disposal: writing everything out on the chalkboard manually or projecting it onto a screen using a transparency projector. Today, the liquid crystal display (LCD) technology becoming common in homes has also made its way into the classroom. If you're an educator who teaches in a school equipped with LCD screens, you can incorporate this technology into your lessons in several ways.

Present class notes and materials using the LCD projector, just as you would have using an older device, such as a transparency projector. Connect the LCD projector to your laptop or desktop computer and open up the program that contains the presentation you'd like to give.

Use the LCD projector to show picture slide shows. Hook the projector up to your computer and play a slide show of images from your Pictures folder while you narrate the images in the context of the class.

Play video clips and even full-length movies. In almost all cases, your projector screen will be significantly larger than any TV you can bring into the classroom — and probably clearer. Play any videos you have on your computer for your students or a pertinent DVD movie that relates to the topic of the class.

Set up a game to work on the LCD projector so that the whole class can participate. For example, you might create a memory game where students need to "pick" a card, make note of the word or image it represents and then find a matching card somewhere else on the board.

Allow students to use the LCD projector for their own class presentations and group activities. In the past, different groups of students may have experienced lesser or greater advantages completing in-class activities based on their ability to purchase more engaging materials for use in presentations and displays. Having technology such as the LCD projector levels the proverbial playing field and allows students from all backgrounds to benefit equally.

Robert Schrader is a writer, photographer, world traveler and creator of the award-winning blog Leave Your Daily Hell. When he's not out globetrotting, you can find him in beautiful Austin, TX, where he lives with his partner.