Using IWBs in an English classroom

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The use of interactive whiteboards in the teaching of secondary school English begins with the very basic use of text and breaking it.

Punctuation and Grammar

There are a variety of ways in which you can use an IWB to enhance the teaching of grammar. Taking sentences, eliminating punctuation from them, and then asking your students to point out where the punctuation once existed is a basic example of an interactive activity.


A basic grammar ‘hide and reveal’ exercise:

  • Type a sentence at the top of the page with various grammatical errors.
  • Copy the sentence and paste it into the middle of the page.
  • Use the pen feature to draw over the sentence, correcting the mistakes.
  • Type the sentence again, error free, at the bottom of the page.
  • Draw a box over the top of the error-free and pen-correct sentences. Ensure that the box covers up both of the sentences.
  • In class ask students to identify what the problems with the top sentence are.
  • Draw an student suggested changes over the top of the sentence and then reveal the hidden sentences to compare.


Using the basic functions of your IWB software you have the ability to break down a poem and highlight the various literary (verse form, etc) techniques being applied.
The use of attached sound clips and imagery (give context, evoke feelings) can add a different dimension to teaching poetry.


The ability to combine screen annotate and capture features with the study of film
An example of using video and screen capture within a lesson is the capturing of motifs and symbolism that appear in a film. When a visible motif (such as the feather in Forest Gump) appears, pause the film, annotate over the screen (using the screen annotate tool) identifying the motif/symbolism, then capture the screen with the annotations and

Essay writing

Use mind-mapping connectors to construct a flow diagram of essay planning. Link the various steps to individual pages that display examples from previous essays.

You can also take previously written essays (whether they are scanned pictures or in a word document) and, combining them with screen annotate tools, highlight and identifying key features (whether they are good or bad).