Teacher Technology Support | News
Michigan District Ramps Up Whiteboard Training
- By Evan Tassistro
Michigan's Wayne-Westland Community Schools is implementing new training for its teachers on the use of interactive whiteboards in the classroom. The district has purchased 685 copies of Blossom Learning's online Smart Board training course.
Blossom Learning's "Mrs. Blossom's Online Smart Board Course," designed in part by teachers and incorporating classroom usage examples, provides beginner through advanced training in the use of Smart interactive whiteboards. A Smart Board system links a computer with connected projector to display a computer screen image on the whiteboard surface. The projection may then be manipulated by touch or with a "digital ink" stylus of which there are four total, each in a different customizable color. A single copy of the course costs $95, but discounts are available for volume purchases.
According to the district's technology plan for 2009-2012, authored in part by Kevin Galbraith, WWCS executive director of technology, the "district has provided each school with interactive whiteboards (at least one per elementary building, two for each middle school, and four for each high school)." Other in-use technologies cited in the plan include ultra-compact camcorders for student-produced video, student response system pads, and one to four computer workstations, laser printer, and TV/VCR per classroom. Investment in "support necessary to ensure the effective use of technology " is also part of the district's technology plan.
WWCSD serves 12,800 students attending 16 elementary, four middle, and three high schools in the city of Westland in Wayne County.
More information about the Blossom online Smart Board course can be found here.
Evan Tassistro is a freelance writer based in San Diego, CA.