How to Use a Smart Board in the Classroom

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Smart Boards are presentation tools that teachers can hook up to a computer in the classroom. The images from the computer will be displayed on the board by a digital projector. Smart Boards allow teachers to use interactive applications with their students. Teachers can make notes on the Smart Boards, highlight content, click through to various applications and also print out content to hand to the students. Teachers give Smart Boards an A+ for providing the ability to share ideas with students and offer remote-learning experiences, as well as for their ease of use.

1 Turn on your computer

Turn on your computer and turn on the projector. Make sure all connections are secure. Your Smart Board will activate automatically. Log onto Windows using the keyboard. If all connections are secured and you have logged in properly, the ready light will turn to green, indicating that the Smart Board is ready for use. The ready light is located near the bottom-right portion of the board.

2 Align or orient your Smart Board

You must align or orient your Smart Board if you want it to work properly. The cursor will jump all around the board if you skip this important step. Orienting your keyboard allows your fingers to register accurately when you are utilizing the Smart Board's interactive functions. To begin orienting your Smart Board, hold down the Keyboard button and right-click the mouse at the same time. The Orientation Screen will appear. Touch the icon in the upper-left area of the computer screen, using your finger or a Smart Board pen. Press "Again" each time the icon appears.

3 Use your Smart Board pens

Use your Smart Board pens to write notes on the Smart Board. Make sure a border appears after you pick up your pen. This means that the digital-ink layer is opened and ready for use. If you want to use a different color, simply pick up a different-colored pen. If you want to use the eraser, just pick that up as well. Make sure that you put each tool back in its appropriate spot before you pick up the next tool. (The Smart Board only recognizes the last tool you picked up from the tray, so to avoid confusion, simply put one tool back before picking up another.) To clear all of your notes at once, use the "Clear Writing" icon at the top of the Smart Board, which looks like a sheet of paper with a yellow sun in the right corner.

4 To capture your notes

To capture your notes in order to save them, use the icon at the top that looks like a camera. If you want to only save a certain area of your notes, use the Area Capture button, which you will find on your Screen Capture toolbar. Use your finger to drag the selection box to the area you want to capture. Click the File button and then the Save button to save your notes.

Based in Richmond, Va., Susan Ayers is a senior learning associate for a financial organization. She previously developed web-based training for Circuit City and spent a number of years creating eLearning courses for a not-for-profit law enforcement organization. Ayers graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Arts in English from Virginia Commonwealth University and holds a master's in education from St. Joseph's College.