There continues to be great controversy over whether or not an interactive white board is "worth the money" in terms of increasing student achievement and skill acquisition. Many contend it is better spent on newer, shinier types of technologies, like mobile devices. Although in truly educational form there are few vetted research studies, in anecdotal writings, and my personal experience in a district of a thousand students, interactive white boards continue to be an exciting way to integrate technology into the classroom, as long as teachers are willing to change their teaching style. I have witnessed teachers using the board as a movie screen, and pushing tables and desks up against it to keep the kids away from it. When that is the case, yes, it's a waste of money. If a teacher is unwilling to allow the students to interact with the board a majority of the time, not allowing the dynamic of how instruction is occurring to change, the power of the board is lost.
Are you be willing to change your teaching style to accommodate this type of technology? If you're not sure what that entails, and would like more information before you're willing to say yea or nay, read the blog The Interactive Whiteboard Readiness Assessment, attached below. For a totally different and thought-provoking opinion, read Why I Hate Interactive Whiteboards, attached below. If you've already taken the leap, and have begun training to integrate this potentially powerful piece of technology into your classroom - welcome - I hope you enjoy the ride!
The Technology Integration Matrix at the left is an excellent tool to help teachers plan lessons that integrate technology at the highest levels of Bloom's Taxonomy. Check it out and tell me what you think!