Would you say that your classroom productivity is high? As time has gone on, our society has become more and more results-oriented. Whether it’s in the classroom or in the workplace, sometimes it’s necessary for productivity to see a boost.

That’s where ViewSonic interactive flat panel displays come in. Thanks to the implementation of technology into the classroom, research has discovered that these tools boost productivity for teachers and students alike.

Hands-on learning works, and designing classrooms and curriculum for active learning has become a major push across K-12 and higher education environments. Project-based teaching, collaboration, and interactive classroom technology all contribute to the proven benefits of hands-on, do-it-yourself learning.

Interactive Technology in the Classroom

Interactive Classroom Technology: 2021 Update

Our original blog around interactive classroom technology was published two years ago – and since then a lot has changed! For one, we’ve experienced a global pandemic and seen quite the shift in today’s education environments. Many schools and education institutions had to transition to distance learning during the height of the peak of COVID-19 in 2020 – in fact, distance education became the top 2020 education technology (EdTech) trend overnight! Today, some schools are transitioning back to in-person classes while others are offering hybrid learning models (connecting the physical classroom with digital learning involving a mix of in-person and virtual students).

In addition to environmental factors changing the landscape of education, two years is a long time and EdTech has been evolving during that time to enhance the learning experience. The interactive classroom technology we discussed in the original blog below has since been updated and enhanced to meet the ever-evolving needs of today’s educators and students.

So, do we still believe that ViewSonic Interactive displays are the best interactive flat panel for education? We decided to go right to the experts to find out! We asked our classroom technology specialist, a school district IT Director, and a current teacher, all who have worked through the pandemic, a few questions to find out their thoughts on the value of interactive classroom technology in today’s education climate.

Classroom Technology Specialist

The author of the original blog below, Cindy Hannas, was a teacher for 21 years. She started working 2 ½ years ago for Parmetech and today she is one of our best business development managers specializing in education and classroom technology.

Question 1 – In speaking with educators throughout the pandemic, what are some common challenges you’ve seen them faced with?

Flexibility is the new buzz word! Teachers have had to learn a new way to teach. Classroom management looks very different on the screen than in the classroom. Face to face interaction was very difficult in the beginning of the shutdown. However, ViewSonic caught up quickly by releasing new features of their myViewBoard software to support distance learning such as allowing the teacher’s face to be seen at all times.  Lesson plans have changed as well. A teacher can now create interactive lessons with interesting downloads to engage students. Assessments, both objective and subjective, can be created on a daily basis and easily scored. While there are many challenges to teaching online, in many ways, the mechanics of teaching have become easier.

Question 2 – Your original blog was written two years ago from your perspective as an educator for 20+ years. If someone was trying to sell you on ViewSonic interactive displays now, what would be your main question(s) and concern(s) regarding implementing this type of interactive classroom technology into your existing classroom?

My main question/concern would be how do I manage my class while teaching online? I need to be able to see all the students, group them when necessary, and keep them engaged and motivated.

What I have learned from my experience is that while teachers have had to adapt to a new teaching environment, it’s the Tech teams that are the unsung heroes of the pandemic. They had to make sure all the technology was in working order, interfacing correctly, and that all the necessary websites were up and running. If they failed, the teachers couldn’t teach. The tech team was the linchpin to the whole process.

Question 3 – How have the ViewSonic interactive display features evolved / what are some of the newer features that have been released that you see as adding value to today’s evolving learning environment?

The ViewSonic ViewBoard interactive flat panels make class management very easy. The teacher can access the software from home and use all the features that the myViewBoard (the accompanying digital collaboration software) offers. The teacher’s face can be seen the entire time, groups can be formed within seconds, and download and interface capabilities keep students engaged. The teacher can manage the groups, check in on students’ progress, and create pop-quizzes to assess learning.

School District IT Director

The answers below come from the Director of Technology at a Pennsylvania School District. We began discussing the ViewSonic interactive displays with the Director as an option for interactive classroom technology in early 2020.

Question 1 – Why did you begin to look into purchasing interactive flat panels (IFPs) for your school?

We were having a hard time keeping our older interactive whiteboards up and running as well as projectors and bulbs. Teachers were constantly submitting help desk tickets regarding our previous classrooms’ setups. We wanted to move in a direction with IFPs to eliminate the extra items required to make these older solutions work (i.e. Projector, Bulb, Pen).

Question 2 – After evaluating multiple brands/manufacturers, why did you ultimately decide to move forward with ViewSonic interactive displays?

ViewSonic has a respected name in the K-12 industry. After reviewing all other boards, the ViewSonic board was within our budget and checked all of the boxes for our IT department as well as our classroom teachers.

Question 3 – What benefits have you seen from implementing ViewSonic interactive panels in your schools’ classrooms? How have they added value?

We have had absolutely no help desk tickets or issues with these boards since they have been installed. This has taken the load off of the IT department so that we can concentrate on other initiatives. The response from the teachers has been excellent. They are really enjoying their new boards and like the fact that they have no disruptions during instruction.

Current Teacher

The answers below come from a Jr/Sr High School Science/STEM Teacher at Pennsylvania School District.

Question 1 – What are some of the challenges you faced as a teacher not having interactive technology in the classroom?

Prior to the interactive technology in my classroom, it was difficult to share content with students that was visually appealing. While we did have other software, it was not as clear and bright as the ViewSonic ViewBoard. Teaching science requires many photos and models to be shared and they were not always fully understood prior to the change in technology.

Question 2 – What benefits have you seen from implementing panels in your classrooms? How have they added value to today’s learning environment for you and for your students?

Since implementing the ViewSonic in my classroom I have been able to work collaboratively with students in our interactive text workbooks. I am able to use the digital version of the book and demonstrate notes, annotations, and problems for students more easily than before. The integration of YouTube also is helpful when using videos to supplement content.

The value the technology has added to my classroom environment has been great for both the students and myself. Students now have the capability to interact from their desks with the ViewSonic ViewBoard and move about the classroom to write and participate in lessons.

Question 3 – Have you utilized the ViewSonic ViewBoard and myViewBoard digital whiteboarding software during the pandemic? If so, how did you use these tools to navigate remote/hybrid learning?

During the pandemic I have utilized the software each day during all lessons. At the start of the year, our students were fully virtual so it allowed me to be in the classroom and learn more about the ViewBoard each day. On days where I was working from home, I used the myViewBoard whiteboard software to annotate and take notes for students in the same way they were familiar with so there was no disruption in education. As we moved to hybrid instruction, students were able to interact with the ViewBoard and I became more confident in my skills using the software and technology.

Is ViewSonic Still the Best Interactive Flat Panel in 2021?

Based off the responses we received, our opinion is that ViewSonic ViewBoard interactive displays are still the best interactive flat panels for education. There are multiple series and sizes to choose from, ensuring there’s a ViewSonic smartboard to fit any classroom environment. What’s more, whether you are teaching from home or if you are back in the classroom, the ViewSonic interactive panels have a full suite of embedded tools help you reach your students no matter the location to make hybrid learning more seamless and engaging.

Additionally, the myViewBoard Collaboration Software for Education, that comes with every ViewSonic Viewboard interactive display, enables teachers to build dynamic lesson plans, import engaging content, share lessons with students, and access their teaching tools, assignments, courses, and documents – all in one place. Teachers can download course materials or activities, and they can send their own materials to other teachers for content sharing and feedback. Whether yours is a Windows, Android, or cloud environment, myViewBoard works well with existing technology and seamlessly integrates into nearly any classroom. myViewBoard is also constantly being updated every month with new features to help support teachers and students in this ever-changing learning environment.

Interested in learning more about ViewSonic interactive displays for education or setting up a virtual demo? We’re here to help with whatever you need and to answer all of your questions! Contact us today or fill out our demo request form to get started.

Original Blog (Published 8/19/2019)

What Business Do I Have Talking About Interactive Technology in the Classroom?

For the past five months, I’ve been working as an Account Manager for Classroom Technology. However, I spent the majority of my professional career as a teacher. I taught for 21 years, mostly as a high school math teacher. While I wasn’t certified to teach Special Ed, I had an affinity for teaching classified students. Therefore, a large percentage of my students were “mainstreamed” students, even at the Advanced level. I created many projects for my students with the idea that math was relevant and had real applications to the student’s life. My projects included determining risk tolerance by buying and selling mutual funds (probability); choosing a career and making a budget based on the average income of that career (percentages, measures of central tendency); and “spending” $5,000 on a credit card and watching the total amount that gets repaid at different interest rates (exponential growth/decay). I created a project for each chapter that we studied and all of my projects required the use of online technology.

My Personal Challenges with Interactive Classroom Technology Tools

I had a SmartBoard in my classroom, but there were several drawbacks to the SmartBoard. First, if I wanted to write on the SmartBoard, I would have to sit at my computer to type text or use the special markers (which were always getting lost!), both of which required me to turn my back on the students. This was certainly not ideal as good classroom management requires a teacher to keep visual contact with the students at all time.

The students loved to write on the SmartBoard to explain how a problem was solved, unfortunately, their handwriting wasn’t always legible! If I uploaded a worksheet/form onto the SmartBoard, writing on the form wasn’t always easy. If I remember correctly, it was a two- or three-step process and even then, the final product wasn’t always neat.

The ViewSonic ViewBoard interactive displays have huge, 20-point touch enhanced touchscreens, which allows multiple users to write, edit, and draw onscreen for dynamic lessons and creative brainstorming.

The ViewSonic ViewBoard also comes with a free lifetime license of the myViewBoard™ software – this software allows you to create a personal yet social experience with your ViewSonic smart whiteboard that is cloud service integrated, highly secured, and multi-functional.

The stylus writing pens that come with the ViewBoard for annotating and drawing on the screen are incredibly accurate; there is also a feature in the embedded myViewBoard™ software that enables handwriting recognition and converts handwritten letters and words on a touch-screen device to typed text!

3 essential tools of learning
Interactive Technology in the Classroom

In addition to the drawbacks of the SmartBoard functionality, I also faced issues with platform compatibility and having to learn a new program/protocol. I remember when our Technology Director switched us from Windows to Google Docs. We were promised that it would be SO EASY to convert our lesson plans from one program to the next. As far as text was concerned, the conversion was very easy — a few formatting glitches, but pretty simple to correct those. Symbols, however, did not translate at all! Math is a symbolic subject. For me, that meant that 17 years of math lesson plans, documents, projects, etc. were lost! The technology department did a quick about face and had to allow us to access both Windows and Google Docs.

The great thing about the ViewSonic ViewBoard gives you and your school the freedom to use the digital tools that work best for you, from legacy lesson files to browser-hosted apps, Google Classroom or Microsoft 365. The ViewBoard supports a full range of end-user devices including Windows, Mac, iOS, and Android devices. This summer, in fact, ViewSonic became a Google for Education Partner and the myViewBoard™ platform has become Google for Education certified, signaling ViewSonic’s official participation in the Google for Education ecosystem and further commitment to the education market.

With ViewSonic, you don’t have to worry about losing your legacy lesson plans! You can convert, edit and share existing content saved in .iwb, .notebook, .ppt and .pdf formats. My ViewBoard also allows you to import/convert your existing Promethean Activinspire (.flipchart), SMART (.notebook), orEasiNote3 (.enb) files and use them instantly! Additionally, you can enliven your existing lessons by incorporating online content, apps and tools via myViewBoard™’s built-in Chrome browser. For teaching or training, there are 10,000+ ready-to-use .iwb files for reference.

Interactive screens for the Classroom

With these interactive screens for classrooms, you never have to worry about having access to your lessons either – you can simply login to any ViewBoard via QR code for instant access to your pen presets, personalized canvases and saved lesson content. When you’re done, just logout and leave the ViewBoard free for the next teacher to use!

MyViewBoards

More Features I Love (And I Think All Educators Will Too)

Another feature I love about the ViewBoards is the automatic shut-off so the boards won’t burn out from being left on. When classroom technologies are accidentally left on overnight such as projectors, the bulbs burn out quickly and are very costly to replace! I know from firsthand experience how easy it is to get pulled from your classroom after school and forget to return to shut down computers and other technologies.

Lastly, I want to touch on support. As I discussed earlier, it was very important to me as a teacher when considering a new classroom technology that all the lessons that I had already created could still be used, as is, with no further adjustments, and that I wouldn’t have to learn another program/protocol to use the new board.

Here at Parmetech, our resident classroom technology expert is amazing! He does a fantastic job of demoing the features of the board and how to use it in real-time in the classroom. Parmetech also provides on-site and virtual training sessions to make sure your entire team feels comfortable with the technology – and for the virtual trainings, we record the sessions for you so you can keep them for reference whenever you need.

Parmetech has a phenomenal partnership with ViewSonic, who not only provides on-site warranties for up to 7 years, but they back it with a US-based service team and award-winning customer support. As a former teacher, I know how frustrating it can be when your technology is down. It is so helpful and comforting to know that the support is always there to help whenever you need it.

The myViewBoard™ software also comes with a library of easy-to-follow, self-paced video tutorials that touch on topics from basic account setup, to understanding tools, to file management and more.

Interactive Board Screen Preview

How Important is Interactive Classroom Technology Today?

Instructors and administrators are working to leverage flexible furnishings and collaborative technology to create spaces that promote active engagement and meaningful learning. In one recent national survey of pre-K-12 teachers, 94% said that classroom and instructional technologies are extremely important or very important. Among these technologies, the front-of-room interactive classroom display plays a critical role. Teachers report that increased student attentiveness and engagement is the number one benefit to teaching with interactive front-of-room technology, and a majority of educators – around 77% in one survey – believe that an interactive display in the classroom is very important or an absolute must

One landmark study of 85 teachers across 170 classrooms found a student achievement gain of 16 percentile points when interactive whiteboards (IWBs) were used. This jumped to 26 points when well-conceived graphs, charts, videos, and other visuals were used to reinforce information; and when “interactive reinforcers” and audience response polling were added, achievement rose a whopping 31 percent.

To Sum It All Up: What is the Best Interactive Flat Panel?

We can all agree that Interactive Displays are here to stay. Interactive classroom technology tools are evolving and the investment is big. Choosing the right IWB will be a very important aspect of a school’s EdTech investment cycle.  So, what is the best interactive flat panel? I think the ViewSonic ViewBoard’s are the best choice when it comes to interactive screens for classrooms; after all the 75” ViewSonic ViewBoard display won Best of Show at ISTE 2019 and the entire Interactive Flat Panel 50 series panels won Best of Show at TCEA in 2018 and at ISTE in 2017 (but hey, maybe I’m a little biased). Learn more about ViewSonic’s interactive technology offerings and how to create an interactive learning environment.

If you’re interested in seeing firsthand how this technology would work in your classrooms, please feel free to contact our team for a complimentary ViewSonic ViewBoard demo!

Curious about a myViewBoard price? We are offering all educational organizations a First Time Buy Promotion – first-time ViewBoard buyers receive exclusive low prices (savings up to $1,430) and free shipping on their first purchase!

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FAQ’s

Interactive technology in classrooms is a type of educational technology (EdTech) that allows students to not only view information, but also interact with the content in their lessons. Interactive technology in classrooms is most often found in the form of digital and interactive whiteboards (also known as interactive displays), interactive projectors, and digital whiteboard collaboration software.
Some of the most common benefits of using interactive classroom technology are improved engagement and retention, increased collaboration among students, accomodation of multiple learning styles (including acting as assistive technology for students with a range of special needs), versatility to incorporate different media into lessons, and flexibility to be used as a resource for both in-person and remote learning.
ViewSonic smart whiteboard can be used in the classroom for interactive learning or hybrid learning. Lessons can be presented directly on the ViewSonic smart whiteboard and teachers can incorporate videos, pictures, PDFs, PowerPoints, polls, quizzes, games, and more into their lessons.