About a year ago we had a staff meeting at my school that was an introduction to the Smartboard. We were all very excited and wondered when they would be distributed around the school. First we had only 2, then 10, and then 2 weeks ago we saw 20 of them in boxes outside the computer lab.
Our computer aide came to each class and asked if we wanted our Smartboard mounted on the wall or in a stand. I chose a stand because I wasn't quite ready to sacrifice wall space. Then one of my colleagues reminded me that when a Smartboard gets bumped it has to be realigned. That thought, plus the size of the stand when they finally delivered mine on Monday, made me rethink my decision.
Yesterday we had our computer lab time and I told our aide that I wanted it mounted on the wall instead. No problem. She also downloaded the software into my school laptop (I nicknamed it "little Mac,) and we got the projector. Before leaving yesterday, I left instructions on the white board about where I wanted the Smartboard mounted and the new places I wanted my maps moved. I need my maps.
This morning I was thrilled that all of my instructions had been followed to a tee (how often does that happen?) and I was very happy with the placement.
Now all I had to do was hook everything up. The computer aide offered to come in at recess, but I was getting impatient to get the blasted thing running and so were the kids.
I got it all hooked up except...I could not figure out how to connect the projector to the laptop. After popping nextdoor, my very helpful neighbor Ramona told me about a little adaptor that came with our laptop. I knew exactly which one she was talking about, it was one that I've been tripping over for the past 3 years and finally took out of the case. It was at home.
Mom to the rescue. I called her and she agreed to bring the adaptor. (I repaid her with a gourmet dinner from In n Out...)
Yay! We were up and running! The kids were so excited. We went onto Starfall.com and practiced manipulating the images on the screen. We can even use it to watch a DVD, and with a set of speakers I have in the room for my Mp3 player, it is like having our own movie theater.
While the kids were in the library later on in the afternoon (teacher planning time) I sat and worked with the software a little. There is, undoubtedly, a lot to learn, and my school currently has no trainings planned, so this is definitely going to have to be a do-it-yourself venture. That's OK. Most of my computer training has been through trial and error and it helps me retain the info better. It is just a little slower.
Still, I'm happy that, after all this time, our Smartboard is finally up. I'm looking forward to using it in the classroom...
Here's a classroom demo I found. Mine is mounted similarly to this one...: