We have recently added some more SMART boards at school and they are becoming popular with both teachers and students. Students are more excited than the teachers, and that caused me to reflect.
If I am correct, active boards and their technology have finally made it to the mainstream. Perhaps it was the Blackberry Storm I began using or the recent Woot offering of a touch screen PC that gave me the insight. Touch screen technology has finally arrived and it will be prevalent. Not only is it hip, but it is useful for the way we want to interact with technology and the world around us.
The benefits of this touch-and-go technology are more than just ease of use. Active boards allow users to arrange content in meaningful ways and construct meaning. Yes, they also allow teachers to create more meaningful presentations, but they are not primarily a presentation tool. They are a tool for community building and offer untold benefits for teachers transitioning into the role of mediators.
When used in this fashion students will re- discover the excitement and fun of learning that comes with true learning as they are able to construct meaning via a technology that is both relevant and part of a 2.0 classroom.