Sunday, February 25, 2007

SMART Board Lessons

“How about some good web sites for primary grades in reading and math… connected to the smart board… thanks.”

This request from a friend who is a second-grade teacher led me to four web sites (three, actually… but you’ll see) that have some very good lessons that primary teachers can use. The unexpected blessing is that these sites also have good lessons for other grade levels in K-12!

The first two sites come from Amphitheater Public Schools in Tucson, Arizona. Their teachers (K-12) have written some high-quality lesson plans that help them--the teachers--to embed technology into the curriculum. Some of the lessons involve ways--both innovative and effective--for students to use the Internet, and others use higher-level thinking along with technology integration.

They also list other useful resources. For example, I found the Literacy Center (, an early literacy site for primary teachers. It has games that can be played on the SMART board.

The next web site comes from Hillside Elementary School in Needham, Massachusetts. The Cyberventures page ( contains a variety of information worth examining. However, the web site I chose for this blog entry contains activities (K-5) especially for SMART boards.

I had fun with the Virtual Geoboard ( and I like the chart ( that maps web sites appropriate for use with an interactive white board based on subject and age group.

The last web site I’ve chosen with SMART board lesson plans and activities (K-12) is from the pdtogo web site that I mentioned in a previous (December 8, 2006… blog entry on SMART boards. These pdtogo podcasts began in January 2006 and still continue. The URL that I’ve bookmarked for you is the lesson archive page. It allows you to look over the entire list of podcasts up to this point… or to examine them based on categories such as “math lessons” or “reading lessons” (see the right-hand column). These podcasts are fun to listen to and/or watch and they include bits of other useful information in addition to SMART board lessons.

Two examples of the lessons available from pdtogo include these literacy lessons for primary students. SMART Board Lesson 56 has a SMART Notebook file (chickachicka.notebook) that can be downloaded for a primary lesson for matching sounds, pictures, and letters. Lesson 62 includes a file for a jeopardy-style game for an early years lesson about letter sounds. Both of these lessons were developed by a kindergarten teacher in Canada.

As I examine lesson plans from each of these sites, it is obvious that they are designed by teachers who know well both their students and the content they are teaching. The web sites are chosen especially for the fact that they contain good lessons for the primary grades. However, the quality doesn’t stop there. Check out these sites even if you teach other grades.

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