Posted tagged ‘writing tablet’

Writing Tablet for Math

March 24, 2008

I’ve been using  a CyberPad writing tablet in my math classroom.  This has taken the place of my whiteboard, chalkboard (yes I still have a chalkboard), and overhead projector.  Here are some advantages and disadvantages:

 Advantages:

1. No more messy overheads. I don’t have the classic blue hand from wiping the overhead with my hand.

2. No more worrying about old markers.  I always get a clear crisp pen line.

3. I can write over all my worksheets.  I don’t have to make an overhead to write on since I just write right over the word document open on the computer.

4. I can save all my work as jpg’s and upload them to my website.

p233n4.jpg

5. I can quickly make a powerpoint and fill in the hard stuff later.  I can make an outline of a powerpoint in a few minutes.   The hard part is using MathType to make all the equations or diagrams that powerpoint can’t do.  Now I can insert the “hard” stuff as I go through the powerpoint with the class.

6. I can have students come up to the tablet to work out problems.  It’s new and students think its cool.

7. I never turn my back on the students to write on the board.  That’s a big one.  I have everything set up so I look at my laptop facing the students and they are looking at the projector screen behind me. 

8.  It can do everything a SmartBoard can do and it’s much cheaper.

Disadvantages

1. It takes a while to get used to the writing. It took a couple of hours of writing to get used to it.  I imagine it’s probably true with learning to write on a whiteboard for the first time.

2. PowerPresenter RE doesn’t work perfectly with Vista.  If you have the program running and then your computer goes to sleep, the program stops working.  You’ll need to restart your computer.  (OF course you don’t have to use that program.  There are many other great ones including the InterWrite package.)

3. You can’t move around.  Some would argue that you are stuck to the desk rather than being able to move around the whiteboard.

I just wrote a grant to get wireless tablets for the entire math department.  I am convinced that this is the best way to go compared to a SmartBoard.  I absolutely love the tablet as a teaching tool.