400 ideas for interactive whiteboards

Pete Sharma, Barney Barrett and Francis Jones (Macmillan2011)
ISBN 978-0-230-41764-9
This text is for teachers looking for inspiration for activities that utilise interactive whiteboards.
The great thing about this book is that ‘It provides practical ideas for using regular programs and software’, not just SMARTboards with Notebook software. Indeed, many of these activities use only a computer with a projector screen.

The introduction covers information on types of interactive whiteboards and how to set them up, as well as a summary of their key features, such as how to use the zoom or screen capture functions. The text is then separated into four key sections; Using regular programs (e.g. computer and projector), Using the whiteboard software (e.g. Notebook), Using published materials (such as digital coursebook software or supplementary DVDs) and Creating and adapting your own materials. It also provides a section on which Interactive Whiteboard to choose.

Simple but creative ideas are provided for teaching each of the four skills as well as grammar, pronunciation, vocabulary and idioms. Some of the activities include: predicting the audio content of video clips, matching activities, games ideas, blanking out words in a text, comparing pictures and pelmanism.

Overall, this text has been extremely useful in assisting me with using Notebook software and projection equipment successfully in the classroom. Some of the activity ideas could be described as obvious classroom tasks to those who are more proficient with technology, yet it is always good to be reminded of these as well as to learn of new ideas.


Emily Bryson
ESOL Lecturer, Glasgow