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Wednesday, February 15, 2006

Is the pen truly mightier than the sword/finger?

Today I had a twilight session on Excel in John Logie Baird Primary school. Whilst waiting for folk to arrive I was ‘playing’ with the newly installed ACTIV Primary board. This is the first time I have really used one of the bigger boards in anger. Fantastic. There is something lovely about using a pen to control the board, but one slight problem is when you turn around to the class you are then looking into the projector lense. Maybe this is just because I am tall though, but a short throw projector would reduce this problem drastically. I must have enjoyed using it though, because I just continued with it for the rest of the twilight session.

Composing this blog at home however I am using a Bluetooth graphics tablet, so just as a recent blog was spoken, this one has actually been handwritten. £130 for a Wacom graphics tablet which provides the same interactivity and functionality as £1K worth of interactive board. As you are not constrained by the dimensions of the board, you can have your projector image as big as you can make it. Oh, and you can use it from anywhere in the classroom or even pass it around the pupils to use. AND it means you aren’t looking into the projector lense.

Progress isn’t always expensive you know.


Blogger marlyn moffat said...

Progress is a mindset thing. Software is a learning thing. Most of us don't have the time. Hardware is a financial thing. Most of us have no conrol over that. Some of our teachers have still to be given the quill!! Oh and the ink!!

1:29 am  
Blogger ab said...

I would argue that all of this is a 'choice' thing - I and many teachers like me chose to make time to learn how to use technology, because of the benefit in the classroom. What I would like to see is an 'informed choice' - right now the buzz words are 'interactive whiteboard', yet here is another technology offering the same functionality at a fraction of the cost. The problem is people don't know about it. We need to spread the word.
All of us have control over finance in schools however - in my last school the Depute Head responsible for ICT was so fed up with me asking that they finally gave in to one of my small requests - we all have a voice, if we don't use it, others simply shout louder.

8:42 am  
Blogger marlyn moffat said...

ICT and progress therein is not being given the priority, though...shout as one might...write memos reports and complaints forms as one might....I intend to put the cat among the pigeons in my class requisition allowance, by not buying any felt pens or pencils or rubbers this year and ordering a tablet instead. Thus far my Head is not fed up enough.....but watch this space....

7:21 pm  

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