Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Smart Boards & Sewing

I have to say, Smart Boards rock! Last year I had a projector for the first time ever, which was a game changer, and about a month ago I received my first SB. Not only is it glorious, it has saved lives. Student lives, which may have ended had I been forced to repeat myself any more.

Here's an example: the dilemma of teaching sewing to a couple dozen kids is that only two or three can see you demonstrate at a time. Meanwhile your back is turned to about 20 kids who have access to pins, needles, and scissors. We've all been there, it ain't pretty. Then of course throughout whatever project you're working on kids wind up spread out across seven different steps and it takes forever to get anywhere because you can't help them all at once.

Smart Board to the rescue! For each of my projects (and each of the practice steps leading up to the projects) I created short videos for each step. The entire class can watch the instruction, and I can replay it as many times as they need without losing my mind repeating myself endlessly. Then when some begin to move ahead while others move slower (or miss a few days of school), I can just play the video for the step everyone needs. It's been amazing!

An added benefit: I upload all the videos to a designated channel on YouTube, that way kids can access them at home if they are doing make-up work or just want to work on projects on their own time. Not saying I get a lot of views, but at Parent/Teacher Conferences a few weeks ago a few parents did tell me that their kids had been watching the videos at home. Hooray for useful technology!


  1. Aren't smartboards wonderful! Have you discovered smart exchange? It is a great resource so you do not have to recreate the wheel. I use my smartboard daily. I am getting ready to switch to a new school in Jan. and have been promised one in my new room and I am holding them to it! I can't imagine teaching without it. Keep the posts coming I love see new ideas for my classroom.

  2. Sounds awesome....I have a smart board too and need to figure it out. How is this different from just projecting videos on a screen from an lcd projector? Thanks for sharing your creative ideas.

    1. Hiya! Really no different from a projector, but the added bonus is you don't have to keep dodging the projector to avoid casting your shadow on the screen. I would have made these last year, but there's so much to create when you first receive visual technology! Thanks for reading!

  3. Denise,
    My Goodness what a wealth of information, you have on your blog!!!!! I have sooooo enjoyed visiting you!!!!!
    2 Questions:
    #1. Is their a specific place we may purchase your information (ex. your folder materials, your lab cards, your handouts for your classes, etc.) and
    #2. Your You Tube Videos, where are they found and can they be used?
    Thank You

    1. Thanks for the props! And excellent timing on your part, because I'm finally getting around to making these things available. I'm putting my lab card labels up on TPT (button is now on the blog) for $1/set, and am working on putting some other resources on there too. I'm also beginning to upload my YouTube videos to an account separate from my school account, so that others can use those as well - the channel is at http://www.youtube.com/user/facsclassroomideas . It's slow going getting those up, so you'll want to check over the next couple of days.

      Thanks for reading! I hope it helps!