As schools attempt to keep up with ever-changing technology and reach students who are more technologically inclined than ever, they are being faced with decisions to make great financial commitments. The decision to turn to new technologies like interactive whiteboards and document cameras can be an extremely beneficial one, provided that teachers are prepared to embrace them. The ISTE NETS Standard 3 addresses this issue by suggesting that teachers “exhibit knowledge, skills, and work processes representative of an innovative professional in global and digital society.” Furthermore, the standard says that teachers should “demonstrate fluency in technology systems and the transfer of current knowledge to new technologies.” That being said, now more than ever teachers need to be well-versed in the technologies available to them in order to make them effective teaching tools.
Take, for example, the interactive whiteboard. After doing some research on the effects of this technology in the classroom, it is clear that they have much to offer students and teachers alike. However, what use is a $3000 piece of equipment if a teacher is not ready and eager to use it? Jan Lacina, in the article “Interactive Whiteboards: Creating Higher-Level, Technological Thinkers?” proposes the idea that schools should be selective in which classrooms or teachers receive interactive whiteboards and that they be adequately prepared to integrate into their daily lessons. If a teacher is willing and ready to use the technology, they can open up a world of opportunities for their students.
Once teachers are comfortable using the technology, some argue it will even save them time in the long run—a literature review by Smith, et al shows that teachers who invest time into using IWBs can actually “save, share, and re-use lesson materials.” To read more about the benefits and drawbacks to IWBs, as well as read further research on their affect on student learning, visit this website put together for a group project for this Teaching with Technology class. Although the research is not exhaustive, it clearly shows the advantages to not only having technology available for use, but the importance of teachers being able to use it well.
 Lacina, J. (2009). Interactive Whiteboards: Creating Higher-Level, Technological Thinkers?. Childhood Education, 85(4), 270. Retrieved from ERIC database.
 Smith, H., Higgins, S., Wall, K., & Miller, J. (2005). Interactive whiteboards: boon or bandwagon? A critical review of the literature. Journal of Computer Assisted Learning, vol 21(2), pgs. 91-101.