TeachersFirst Edge - Drawing/Whiteboards

 

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Homestyler - Autodesk

Grades
5 to 12
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Homestyler is a free online interior design planner. Users choose a layout plan, add details such as doors, windows, and furnishings, and then decide on color schemes for interior decorating....more
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Homestyler is a free online interior design planner. Users choose a layout plan, add details such as doors, windows, and furnishings, and then decide on color schemes for interior decorating. Designs are viewable in both a 2D and 3D format. This is a free online program that requires no downloading. Registration does require an email address. This site may or may not be fully accessible inside your school filtering. Check to make sure all portions of this site are available when using your school's network. Homestyler does have a retail component that suggests certain name brands for appliances, and building supplies but the 3D designing capability outshines this form of advertising.

tag(s): architecture (84), area (71), design (93), volume (48)

In the Classroom

Users click and drag design components onto the main layout page. The free draw tool is a bit trickier to control but is similar to drawing tools in other programs. The perimeter measurement scrolls alongside the line you are drawing. The interface for such a complicated concept is intuitive. Students will need explicit instructions on how to operate this program.

Use an interactive whiteboard or projector to share the tutorial presentation and demonstrate how to use the design tools. Divide students into cooperative learning groups to explore the site. Consider this resource to help math students visualize how to compute the surface area of three-dimensional shapes and understand how area and volume change with scale. Social Studies and History teachers can ask students to re-create the interior of an early American home, Greek Temple or even their own classroom. With guidance, this could be a wonderful tool to help younger students understand interior mapping skills. Classrooms focusing on "real-world learning" may find this a valuable resource tool to help students create design plans for an alternative environment.

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CoSketch - cosketch.com

Grades
9 to 12
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This free site provides an instant whiteboard for collaboration by multiple people. Brainstorm, add text or shapes, or upload and annotate an image. Use Google Maps to add a background....more
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This free site provides an instant whiteboard for collaboration by multiple people. Brainstorm, add text or shapes, or upload and annotate an image. Use Google Maps to add a background. Create a graphic from scratch using the geometric shapes. Share the whiteboard to brainstorm with both words and shapes. Include photos or other images as part of your collective visual "thinking." A chat function exists on the whiteboard space, as well.

tag(s): chat (54), multimedia (62)

In the Classroom

Users need to know how to locate and upload a picture from the computer and how to manage basic tools, etc. Use the temporary room for use by you or a group of collaborators. Invite others to collaborate by sharing the URL of the whiteboard. Change your nickname so that others can recognize you. Tools are easy to use and require very little play to be comfortable. Click "Save sketch as embeddable image" to save the creation as an easily embedded image file. You can also use the print screen function (PrtSc button on a PC) or apple/shift/4 combination on a mac. For schools needing more photo mash up options to alter artwork or photos, this is an alternative.

The site includes a chat function. Be sure to caution students about appropriate use. Continuous monitoring by teachers is essential!

Use pictures from a science lab or experiment to write information on the picture. Have student groups collaborate to create a diagram of the steps in a process shown in a photograph. Have students add annotations to art images or ad layouts, showing design elements and the path of your eye as you view the image. Show math concepts using geometric shapes. Create images as a group or use for tutorials. Create artwork or use for brainstorming. Have students create their own whiteboard as part of a research project. Project the image on your interactive whiteboard or projector as you begin a unit or lesson or to recap the steps in a process with the entire class. Collaborate with others outside the classroom as you create a community map or action plan together. Encourage students to use this site to review or plan together.

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Board800 - TechnoTablet

Grades
K to 12
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Use Board800 to make whiteboard drawings, graphic organizers, or other collaborative works in a simple online space that can be shared with others in real time. Use the unique session...more
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Use Board800 to make whiteboard drawings, graphic organizers, or other collaborative works in a simple online space that can be shared with others in real time. Use the unique session number to share via email with others or provide the code for others to enter to join using their computer. Boards last 90 days. Tools include freehand drawing, basic shapes, text tools, and inserting an image. Find hints and tips along the side of the board. Drag and resize elements of the board.

tag(s): concept mapping (21), drawing (83)

In the Classroom

Access to past boards is available only for 90 days. Simply click SAVE IMAGE to save as a .png image on your desktop. Users will find the interface simple and easy to use. Be sure to save the session number or the image of the final board for sharing on a wiki, blog, or site for continued collaboration in class.

Once shared, any whiteboard session can be seen and altered by others who know the URL. There is no record of who makes changes, so student-to-student "vandalism" is possible. Be sure students are aware of the task for the group and class rules for this behavior are known. Do not insert student drawings on wikis, blogs, or sites unless this is within school policies.

Assess prior knowledge as you start a unit by generating a class board. Save it under your class/teacher account to re-access throughout the unit, adding new topics and content. Make the URL available from your class web page for students to use as review or for learning support teachers to reinforce what has happened in class. Have student groups map out the content of projects. Encourage visual prewriting for the students who "think in pictures." Have students create review organizers or drag and drop activities to share with classmates. Brainstorm together over time or distance by letting students add ideas from home or collaborating from another school. Save your visual notes from a faculty meeting to reopen next time. Allow students to use a board as their visual during speeches. Map the sequence of steps in a chemical reaction or in the solution of a math problem. Then share the URL for absent students to "see" what happened in class. Annotate design principles directly on top of an uploaded image or have students submit their own analysis of an image by sending you the URL for their board. Have young students use a board to draw out ideas before they can even write entire sentences. Use group boards for collaborating on any kind of work or think-pair-share types of activities. This tool has endless possibilities!

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Mutapic - Wotoco

Grades
K to 12
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Use this online picture generator to draw and create original art. Create logos, patterns, or other elements. Click on the green button to begin. Create a new picture by combining ...more
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Use this online picture generator to draw and create original art. Create logos, patterns, or other elements. Click on the green button to begin. Create a new picture by combining two others. Mutapic randomly generates pictures so choices are different each time. Choose the two pictures in the space at the left side of the screen. Click the green button to generate a new picture. Change any of the aspects listed such as tint, brightness, symmetry, and more to change aspects of the picture. Some features such as Save and Import are only available with the professional version. Work can easily be saved using the print screen function (Print Screen -- PrtScrn key -- in Windows or Apple/Shift/4 in a Mac). Your image can then be "pasted" into a document, slide, or elsewhere, using Ctrl+V (Command+v on Mac).

tag(s): design (93), drawing (83), elements (36), images (271)

In the Classroom

Use to generate original artwork which can be shared with the class on a blog, wiki, or site. Use the designs to discuss aspects of art such as line color, balance, shape, texture, etc. Recreate drawings in class using media found in the classroom. Challenge students to create their own projects in cooperative learning groups. Have students operate this tool on an interactive whiteboard to demonstrate design principles in Art class. Make creative bulletin board displays or visual writing prompts, simply by asking "what is it?" or "what does it do?" next to your new designs. Decorate student-made greeting cards using images as part of an informal letter-writing activity.

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Cacoo - Nulab, Inc.

Grades
7 to 12
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Looking for an easy way to create diagrams? This free site is easy to use and allows collaboration in creation of drawings. View the overview video on the front page ...more
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Looking for an easy way to create diagrams? This free site is easy to use and allows collaboration in creation of drawings. View the overview video on the front page of this site to familiarize yourself with its functions.

tag(s): charts and graphs (192), drawing (83)

In the Classroom

Users must be willing to play with this great resource. Drag shapes from the stencil area. Use the Inspector to add text, change colors, change sizes, and rearrange among many other functions. Use the toolbars along the top to upload an image, add items such as lines, take a snapshot, as well as other snapshots (hover over these buttons to read what each item is.) Use the buttons in the upper right, to export as a PNG, save, or share your drawing. Use the Save URL to embed in a wiki, blog, or other site.

Though an email is required, it is not necessary to begin using this resource. The tool does not show which work is attributable to which student. You may want to require that students initial their contributions in order to get credit. If students are using as a group, you may want to spell out specific consequences for project "vandalism," depending on your students. You may allow students to self-register, but be sure to keep a written record of their passwords for when they "forget." It may be worth your time to do advanced registration for your younger students.

Use Cacoo much like other drawing and flowchart software. Use to take notes, create decision-making flowcharts, illustrate concepts, sketch a story/plot pattern, and more. Create classification diagrams on the type of animal being studied. Create dichotomous keys for identifying any kind of object or making a decision. Use to identify roles and responsibilities as pre-planning for a group project. Use as a storyboard as part of pre-production for a movie or podcast to be created by either individuals or a group. Ask students to share their storyboard or group responsibilities with you. Use as an alternative to a quiz by having students diagram a process such as oxidation or the steps from a bill to a law.

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Draw.to - draw.to

Grades
K to 12
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Find easy to use tools to create sketches and drawings. Easily share your creation. No need to register. Easy to use tools make this drawing program fun. Completed drawings can ...more
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Find easy to use tools to create sketches and drawings. Easily share your creation. No need to register. Easy to use tools make this drawing program fun. Completed drawings can be shared instantaneously by URL or through various social sites, such as Facebook, Delicious, and more. The instant sharing feature makes this tool especially useful.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): drawing (83)

In the Classroom

Skills required: Users must be willing to play and play again! Use tools for thin, medium, or thick lines. Change colors of the pen by clicking on the black square and choosing a different color. Don't like what you have changed? Click the undo button (or the redo if you want to go back again!) Add text to the drawing by clicking the text button, enter the text, and then click the cursor at a place in the drawing where you wish it to appear. Use the eraser to remove certain areas of the drawing. Be sure to note: there IS an undo button! Click the share button to share as a URL or on facebook, twitter, and other applications including embed to place the code on a wiki, blog, or other site. Users must be able to manage using embed codes on the site of their choice.

Users can create directly without any need for registration or logins. Want to keep a picture version of the creation? Take a snapshot using the print screen function on PC or the snapshot in Mac (use apple/shift/4.)

Use slides of drawings to show any major concept. In History, show battlefronts in specific wars. Create drawings of material learned in science such as bonding of atoms, DNA structure and replication, food chains and webs, and physical laws. Use in solving Math problems as a physical whiteboard. Use with students to describe their day or specific emotions. If you are fortunate enough to have laptops or handheld devices such as iPod Touches, use this tool for a quick formative assessment by asking students to sketch their understanding of relationships between concepts (concept map) or a diagram of a science concept such as what is happening inside a volcano. Students can share it by URL, Twitter, or whichever social networking/bookmarking service is available in your school. Draw for understanding!

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Tux Paint - Bill Kendrick

Grades
K to 6
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Are school budget cuts cramping your style? Then look at this award winning, FREE drawing application! Tux Paint is an "open source" drawing software for young students (preK - grade...more
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Are school budget cuts cramping your style? Then look at this award winning, FREE drawing application! Tux Paint is an "open source" drawing software for young students (preK - grade 6) and is available to the public at no cost. If you are familiar with Kid Pix, you will feel right at home with Tux Paint. The design is straightforward, and easy to navigate. The center of the screen serves as a large canvas with drawing tools on either side. Beneath the screen is a color palette. A cute penguin cartoon character directs students through the program and provides helpful tips. Some of the features include a large, kid friendly mouse pointer, brushes, stamps, sounds, erasers, letters, numbers, "magic effects," and an undo/redo option. Save artwork directly onto a slide finder page without having to create a file name. The installation is quick and easy even for older computers. First, download the application itself, and then the stamp collection. The number of stamps and the variety of images is amazing! Feel free to install Tux Paint on as many computers as you wish. Tux Paint will work on a variety of operating platforms such as Windows, OS X 10.3, and Linux. The "Tux Paint Configuration" tool is a separate file found on the "Tux Paint" download page. Having the controls in a different location makes it difficult for students to adjust the settings. Simply open the Tux Paint Configuration file and a main control panel will come up. From here, the supervising adult can control the screen size, sound, mouse, print settings, and save functions. Adjust the settings and simplify the program for younger children. Choose from approximately 80 different languages to run Tux Paint. Click here to see an example of a "painting" made to accompany the book Chicka Chicka BOOM BOOM .

tag(s): creativity (121), drawing (83), painting (66)

In the Classroom

Introduce this fabulous site on your projector or interactive whiteboard. Have students take turns trying the program. Include a link to Tux Paint on your class website and encourage families to download Tux Paint onto their family computer. Elementary teachers will enjoy all the options Tux Paint provides for image making. Classroom teachers can have students draw a response to a class glyph, illustrate stories, label scientific images, write and illustrate word problems or create self-portraits. You will need headphones or speakers for the audio portions of this site. Dazzle parents at Open House or Back to School Night with a viewing of the slide show presentation or looping animation of student work. Save student work as a JPG and export images into a multimedia presentation with narration using Slidestory, reviewed here. Ask older students to design and submit new stamps to Tux Paint. Explain to them the premise behind Open Source software and how to participate in collaborative software development. Tux Paint is also a great way to teach young students how to control a mouse, type, drag, and cut or paste imagery. Stuck for lesson ideas on how to use Tux Paint, just ask the students!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Queeky - Philipp Hennermann

Grades
2 to 12
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Queeky offers two feature-rich, online draw/paint programs: Queeky Paint (also available as a downloadable, offline paint program for Mac or Windows) and Multidraw. Queeky Paint provides...more
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Queeky offers two feature-rich, online draw/paint programs: Queeky Paint (also available as a downloadable, offline paint program for Mac or Windows) and Multidraw. Queeky Paint provides sophisticated draw and paint tools. QueekyPaint supports upload of your own image to then draw, paint, or alter. Multidraw allows multiple people to collaborate on a drawing board while text chatting in near-real time. Multidraw offers more than tools and options the simple paint programs and also adds a playback feature so you can watch the drawing process played back over and over. Chat as you draw together with other in Multidraw. Multidraw also uses HTML5 computer language so it works on mobile devices that do not support Flash! You have complete control of transparency, line thickness, colors (within a web palette), and much, much more. Queeky also hosts a community of very accomplished digital artists to learn from, even if you never lift an electronic pencil. Watch featured artists' works played back to see they were done, and even start from one drawing to create a new version ("variate"). If you are fortunate enough to have a mobile tablet, use the Multidraw tools with your finger! There is a full screen option to use while drawing or playing back, as well. Begin a multidraw drawing without any membership. You can password protect it to limit those who have access to make changes. Be sure to mark the url in Favorites or copy/paste it somewhere it will not get lost! Share it with others to join the drawing simply by giving them the url (and password). Drawings without passwords are open for the public to join in -- probably not a good idea! Save completed (NOT playable) drawings by clicking Save.It will open in a new window for you to RIGHT click and SAVE As a png file on your local computer. Note that the files are designed for use on computers and are not high resolution print-quality images for brochures, etc.
This site includes advertising.

tag(s): creativity (121), design (93), drawing (83), graphic design (35)

In the Classroom

To view and share drawings on a projector or interactive whiteboard with your class, you do not need to join. You can even draw. collaborate, and play back a drawing without saving. For full features, join the site (free). The confirmation email is slow to arrive, so join a day or so ahead of time. We suspect that the Germany-based site has real humans checking memberships on Germany time! While you wait, you can experiment with the drawing tools or learn about them by visiting the gallery and "playing" some drawings to see how some of the tools can be set to create truly artistic images. Be sure to experiment with the tools together with your students. There is an undo tool--very important as you start out. There are no demonstration videos or help screens, so you may learn best by doing or watching what others have done. There is a forum where users discuss tools, etc. Preview before sending students here, but the advice may be very helpful.

This is a public site, so even though the Terms of Use prohibit obscene drawings, teachers will want to preview Galleries they plan to use and have a specific policy in place for students who navigate the site on their own. The public can see any artwork you create and view your profile, so students should have parent permission before creating any online artwork of their own and should maintain an anonymous identity on the site. Consider using a whole-class account so you can monitor activity. Students could name their works using a coded initial system so you would know who created what. This site allows outsiders to comment on public projects. You will want to discuss these features in the context of Internet Safety or establish specific written class rules and consequences for interacting with outsiders. This is a good opportunity to discuss netiquette and how to participate positively and safely in online communities.

Art teachers will love the chance to teach about design elements in a public, hands-on environment. Assign students to use only certain tools or to "variate" on a starter drawing you provide to demonstrate both creativity and mastery of the elements. Students using the tool from home could generate an actual portfolio of drawings without expending precious art materials. Have students or groups create collections or locate artworks in the galleries that demonstrate the design elements or techniques you want them to notice. Without joining the site, play selected drawings on a projector or interactive whiteboard and have students narrate what they see the artist doing.

Students in other subjects can use password protected Multidraw "rooms" (save the URL!) to create and share collaborative visual explanations of science processes, book covers for literature (with explanations for the design choices, of course), visual responses to poetry, graphics or logos for "companies" they create in a business or math class, etc. The animated playbacks of drawings could even show how to form letters in manuscript or do calligraphy (if you can do it without making a mistake!). An animated playback of a science process like the water cycle would be a great way to assess student understanding or reinforce the concepts. Challenge your gifted students to collaborate on Multidraw diagrams and playbacks to explain processes, sketch out ideas, or plan a project.

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Scratch - Lifelong Kindergarten Group, MIT Media Lab

Grades
1 to 12
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Want to get in touch with your inner child? Get Scratch! Warning: The use of this application is quite fun and engaging! Scratch is a downloaded program that creates interactive ...more
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Want to get in touch with your inner child? Get Scratch! Warning: The use of this application is quite fun and engaging! Scratch is a downloaded program that creates interactive stories, animations, games, music, and art. This application can be used for bringing simple ideas and projects to life. It has great use as a paint program without using the animations. Downloads/install files are available for Mac or PC. Other links include a Getting Started PDF, Help screens to show what each block controls and how to use, and a Reference Guide which provides an overview of the interface. A support page is also available for help in using the application.

Material created can only be viewed within the program. Drawings are not saved as a JPG or pic file. However, a "snapshot" of the screen can be created by using these keys in Mac: apple, shift, and 4 and click/drag to surround the portion to save. In PC use: control/print screen. These snapshots can be uploaded or used as a picture in other applications.

tag(s): animation (66), coding (63), Computational Thinking (14), critical thinking (119), design (93), drawing (83), problem solving (286)

In the Classroom

Quick start: Click stage and in the center pane, click on backgrounds. Click on paint to make a new background. Different colors, pens, and materials can be used to create the background or an image can be brought in from your computer. Objects in Scratch are called a Sprite and can be added in by choosing the folders below the screen. By clicking the script tab, blocks can be moved in to create motion, add sounds (even record your own message), and change the look of the Sprite. Blocks are linked on to each other to create a series of events. A control block dragged to the top of the blocks control which key starts the event. Advanced options include adding variables and other controls.

Be sure to check with your Technology Department, as many districts require authorization to download or install new applications. Projects can be shared online; however an account is required.

Work is saved to the computer itself and only shared online via an account. To avoid problems concerning content made by outsiders or issues with sharing, save the work locally and either create your own gallery on a supervised class website/wiki or set up a single account where you share the "best" projects online via your own log-in. Remind students of the school's Acceptable Use Policy and consequences of violations, if you do allow them to join/share. Images used should adhere to all copyright rules. Use pictures taken in class or those with Creative Commons licensing (and provide attribution!).

Practical tips: Students quickly catch on to this program when allowed to play and easily see what they can make from it. Provide a simple assignment with defined rules/tasks to learn the tools. Younger students may familiarize themselves more easily working with a partner. Have students use a storyboard to write down what they will do/draw/say in their creation in order to keep tabs on what students and their creations.

Possible uses: For the lower grades, Scratch provides unlimited possibilities. Use as a new way to show vocabulary usage. Use the paint program to add information to a picture from your class field trip or science experiment. Use Scratch to help in storytelling a concept in a new and unique way, such as how rocks are formed. In the upper grades, use Scratch to show complex material in a new way. For example, students can draw DNA and show replication, etc. through their drawings and storytelling. Draw the different movements of landforms in plate tectonics. Draw or illustrate solutions to Math problems.

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Project//Draw 0.6 - AutoDesk Labs

Grades
4 to 12
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No special skills needed, just a little willingness to "play"! This product is an online vector drawing/technical drawing tool for geometry, science, engineering, and more. Vector drawings...more
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No special skills needed, just a little willingness to "play"! This product is an online vector drawing/technical drawing tool for geometry, science, engineering, and more. Vector drawings are far more precise because they are based on mathematical formulas (which you cannot see, of course), instead of the "little boxes" of pixels. Free membership allows you to save and re-access drawings later, all via the web. You can also export drawings to be saved on your own computer is several file formats. The drawing grid allows you to make floor plans, circuit diagrams, flow charts, project mock-ups, or simply demonstrate geometry concepts. Our editors noted that the way to make a shape "no fill" is to set its transparency to 0.0. A little experimentation will help you figure out the drag and drop tools. The tool works best in Firefox 1.5+ or Internet Explorer 6+. Editors' note: we tried the "upload an image" feature and found it "glitchy." You should not count on that feature.

tag(s): electricity (88), modeling (10)

In the Classroom

This tool is amazing on interactive whiteboard. Teach simple concepts, such as area,on the board or have students at computers create their own floor plans or maps to reinforce concepts of proportion, direction, and more. Students can even collaborate from home or continue over several days, since the files can be saved on the system. If you wish to save drawings on Project//Draw, create a single class log-in using an "extra" teacher email account and have all students use that log-in, as well. [We recommend that every teacher keep a secondary email account just for memberships.] Make sure you specify some standard ways for students to name files so you know who created them!

Students who log in and venture throughout the support site behind this will eventually find some bulletin boards where people are discussing features of the program. These discussions are largely technical and do not involve "social networking," but you should be aware of them.

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Web Whiteboard - Henrik Kniberg

Grades
K to 12
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Web Whiteboard is a free, collaborative, online whiteboard that doesn't require registration. All collaboration takes place in real-time, so there is no need to save work as you use...more
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Web Whiteboard is a free, collaborative, online whiteboard that doesn't require registration. All collaboration takes place in real-time, so there is no need to save work as you use the whiteboard. Just click the link to begin using the whiteboard tools. Share the URL with collaborators. Web Whiteboard also includes a direct link to create a whiteboard using Google Hangouts. Boards remain available for 21 days when using the free account. For more information, be sure to watch the one-minute demo for an overview of how to use this tool.

tag(s): collaboration (16), iwb (32)

In the Classroom

Allow students to create collaborative drawings as responses to literature. They can map out the plot or themes, add labels, create character studies, and more. Share the finished products on an interactive whiteboard, projector, or your class website. Have a group of students create a drawing that another group can use as a writing prompt. Use Web Whiteboard as a brainstorming or sketching space as groups or the class share ideas for a major project or to solve a real world problem. Use this site with students in a computer lab (or on laptops) to create a drawing of the setting in a story as it is read aloud. As a creative assessment idea, have students draw out a simple cartoon with stick figures to explain a more complex process such as how a democracy works. If you are lucky enough to teach in a BYOT setting, use Web Whiteboard to demonstrate and illustrate any concept while students use the chat and drawing tools to interact in real time. If you are studying weather, have students diagram the layers of the atmosphere and what happens during a thunderstorm, for example. Introduce this tool to students who are working on group projects. Alternatively, have students use this to work as partners or as a small team to complete complex math problems or equations. Give students a problem by typing it on their board. Then have them work through it together, noting all of their reasoning and steps of work along the way.

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