The key to getting your students involved with your whiteboard is to have them participate in the learning experience. But sometimes, finding engaging ways to use your whiteboard is harder than it sounds. Below are a few ways to spice up your teaching routine and make the whiteboard the center of fun and learning.
Use the dry erase markers and draw a simple stick man on the board (or use your artistic talent if you have it) before students arrive for class. There are even magnets available that portray the bones of the body and could save you time (and potential embarrassment from drawing the figure yourself). During instruction, students can then interact with the whiteboard by labeling the body, or could compete in teams to see who can label the most correctly.
Most students love to take advantage of drawing on a whiteboard with dry erase markers. If you take advantage of this natural inclination, you can promote learning while the students are just having fun. Start by writing each vocabulary word on a single piece of paper and then place all the words in a hat, bowl, or envelope. Divide the class into two teams. Teams will take turns having one student choose a word out of the hat and proceed to draw the term on the whiteboard for the rest of his or her team to guess. The second team will monitor and keep time while this happens. Glass whiteboards function well for this type of game due to the fact they can be erased more easily than other types of boards.
By having a set of laminated letters and symbols, like “a,” “=,” or the pi sign, students can build mathematical equations at the board. This can be a review process, or game, where the student is told to build the equation and then must use the laminated signs and symbols. For example, a student instructed to build the Pythagorean Theorem would select the provided “a,” “b,” “c” and “=” cards and construct the equation, inserting the marks for square on their own.
Positive Parts of Speech
To help your class master the parts of speech, have one student sit with their back against the whiteboard. Students will then come up one by one and write a word, phrase, or complete sentence that positively affirms the individual seated. For example, the instructions could be to write an adjective describing the person in the chair. Students will then be required to think of a unique adjective to describe their fellow classmate. The fun happens as the student being described gets to turn around and enjoy the compliments given by his classmates.
Each of these ideas can be altered to suit your specific course and classroom structure. Getting your students involved with the whiteboard can be as simple as handing them a marker, and some of the top rating schools around are doing just that.