I loved the addition of the interactive whiteboard to my classroom about ten years ago. I embraced the use of computer technology from when I bought my first home computer in 1985 and first used computers in my classroom in 1986. The interactive whiteboard was a way of making use of the technology inclusive. Instead of one or two children taking a turn on the computer while the rest of the class were engaged in other things, we could all be involved at the same time, if desired.
I used the interactive whiteboard with the whole class for introducing topics, brainstorming ideas and explaining concepts. It was great for modelled writing lessons and collaborative reading. I found it particularly useful for demonstrating the processes to follow in the computer lab.
I used some purchased software, but also spent a lot of time creating activities to teach or practice particular concepts or skills. Versions of many of these lessons are now available here on readilearn.
While PowerPoint was a reasonably effective tool for creating interactive lessons, the result was unsuitable for sharing with others as the functionality of the presentations varied from computer to computer. Fonts and image size would change, and animations and interactions would behave erratically. What I created on my home computer wouldn’t always behave as expected on the school computer; so, I certainly couldn’t rely on it to perform as intended on another’s computer.
My desire to share interactive lessons with others necessitated creating my own website. While other sites such as Teachers Pay Teachers make it easy to share printable resources, they don’t have the facility for uploading interactive resources. While I could have uploaded PowerPoint resources but, as previously explained, I was unable to guarantee their integrity when downloaded by others.
After considerable investigation, I found a program that enables me to make and share interactive resources that maintain their integrity when used on a computer. With a new one added to the collection this week, there are now over twenty interactive, and even more digital, resources available, keeping the number slightly above the ten per cent I determined to make the minimum.
Two new resources – available free for a limited time
This week’s new interactive resource What’s my shape provides children with opportunities to recognise and match shapes to their shadow image.
Due to the expenditure of both time and money required to create interactive resources, I usually make them available to paid subscribers only. However, as a special gift for Christmas, I am making this resource available free until 10 January. To use, all you need to do is register.
While many teachers are now on holidays, this activity is suited for use by parents with their younger children, up to about five or six years of age. So, if you have children in that age group, please take the opportunity to try it out. Please note, functionality of digital interactive resources is optimised on a computer.
Mac users – feedback please
If you use What’s my Shape on a Mac, please let me know how it goes. I am using a new program on trial and want to be sure the quality remains the same on both Windows and Apple computers before I commit to the purchase. You can send me an email or let me know in the comments. Thank you.????
A second resource also uploaded this week, though not interactive, is more suited to the older six and seven-year-old children.
Which gift? Playing Secret Santa – a logic puzzle provides children with opportunities to engage in deductive reasoning, reading and mathematics as they attempt to work out who gave which gift to whom. The activity is equally suited to the classroom or home. Once again, I have made this resource available free until 10 January 2018. All you need do is register to use. (Please note, while your email address is required for registration, it will never be shared with anyone else.)
Check out these other interactive Christmas resources:
and these free Christmas activities:
Free resources are available in almost every category. All I ask is that you register to use.
A readilearn subscription also makes a special gift to let early childhood teachers know their work is appreciated. Contact me for details.
Resources beyond worksheets – lessons for teachers made by teachers.
Let readilearn lighten your workload.
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