Opelika’s Carver Elementary is starting the school year with a new building wing and new Clear Touch Interactive panels.
Clear Touch panels are similar to Promethean boards, which is what the school had used in past years, in that they allow teachers to display slideshows, videos and snapshots of students work. But, the similarities end there.
According to Stacy Royster, Opelika City Schools Technology Coordinator, the real difference is in Clear Touch’s display and usability.
“There were a lot of problems that we had heard complaints about from the teachers,” Royster said of the old Promethean boards. “So we went out and searched for what new technology was coming out that might have been a little bit better on the student side and actually more engaging on the student side, and that’s when we found the Clear Touch interactive panel.”
Clear Touch boards are not a projector and instead the panels function much like computer screens, displaying clear and bright images without creating shadows if one gets too close. All glares have been eliminated, so teachers no longer have to turn off lights when using the board.
The entire board is touch-screen, other than the frame, making student interaction easier than boards that require a pen. The wall mount is also adjustable, allowing the board to slide down so younger operators, such as kindergarteners, can easily reach the screen. The boards are built with Gorilla Glass, preventing students from damaging the equipment.
Teacher Lisa Ray said the panels helped foster student interaction and engagement in her classroom.“It was very easy to get used to,” Ray said. “It was also great that several students could work on the screen at one time and not just one, and you didn’t have to use a pen. You could use your fingers, your hands. … It’s exciting, and it’s just cutting edge.”
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