When I was at school, I can’t remember ever using mini-whiteboards but since I started teaching, everyone uses them. They are fantastic for assessing learning and take away the fear factor of getting something wrong. Pupils will happily give answers all lesson long if they have a mini-whiteboard. I have expanded this to using my entire classroom…
One lesson, I found a pupil writing on the table with a dry-wipe marker (obviously not what I intended) but it does indeed wipe off. The next lesson I used the tables as a whiteboard and asked pupils to write down what they knew about ‘7x’, the response was fantastic, everybody wanted to get involved and the novelty of writing on the tables and no fear of getting something wrong in their books meant that pupils wrote down lots of ideas. So that pupils had something to put in their books, I took pictures of each table that I could give to them in the next lesson to stick in.
I would recommend getting a cleaning spray from the cleaners as it cleans up much better and have a camera ready to take pictures as evidence of the great work that the pupils produce. Have fun with it but as with every idea, don’t overuse it.
Pupils love to come to the interactive whiteboard and demonstrate to their friends how to solve a problem but some pupils often get restless sitting in their chairs for a full lesson. To overcome this I have started using the floor as a stage area. The way I have my classroom set out, leaves me with a stage/dance floor in the middle of my room so I started to make the most of this. The floor can be a great resource to demonstrate constructions or drawing graphs. My school is just over 1 year old so I didn’t want to ruin the floor by drawing on it but I simply cover it with sugar paper and have a huge blank canvas. I was surprised how willing pupils were to get down on the floor and construct angle bisectors, perpendicular bisectors, translations etc. I once demonstrated an enlargement but didn’t put enough paper down to complete the enlargement, so make sure that you try any questions beforehand unlike me. I am sure there are many other things that can be taught using the floor that I haven’t mentioned yet so please let me know if you have tried anything that might be worth a go. I would love to try it out.
So next time you need to demonstrate a construction or brainstorm as a class think about using the floor or writing on the table and see how your pupils respond.