Interactive Whiteboards in Australia

News, ideas and discussion about interactive whiteboards in education

Posts Tagged ‘lessons’

11 ways to use recorded sound in your classroom

Posted by rosiemacalpine on December 12, 2008

If you haven’t recorded audio for your IWB activities before, you might want to look at the previous post to get some tips on the technical side of things. Below are some starting ideas for how you can use this resources to add another dimension to your lessons. How else have you used audio recording in your class?

1. I’ve got rhythm. A student claps a simple rhythm into the microphone.  The next student listens to the sound, then uses the musical notation resources to represent the rhythm.


2. Exploring adjectives. Put a number of pictures on the page. Students come to the board and record a phrase for one of the pictures, using two adjectives e.g. “the blue, sparkling ocean.” They drag their sound clip on top of the picture for other students to hear.

3. Story chain. Children take it in turns to come to the board and record two sentences of a story. The next child listens to it, then records the next part of the story and draws a path between the sound icons.


4. Learning another language 1. Record some nouns on the board in your chosen language. Add a picture for each word. Students listen to the word and then drag the correct picture to match it (if using Activstudio, you could use containers here to check the answers).

5. Learning another language 2. Student 1 records a phrase. Student 2 records the translation of that phrase. Other students could listen to them and match the phrase and the translation.

6. Celebrating each other. Put your class picture on the board. Each student records a sentence saying something they like about another student. e.g. “Harriet is good at maths and is kind to her friends.” They drag the sound clip icon to that student”s picture.

7. Phonics 1. Sound out the phonemes of a CVCC word e.g. ch-a-n-t. Students click on the sound icon, listen carefully to the phonemes, then write the word under the sound clip icon.

8. Phonics 2. Type the 44 graphemes on the board. Record the matching phonemes, and attach them to each sound. As students drag the letters around to make words, they can click on the graphemes to listen to the phonemes and sound out the word.

9. Following instructions. A student makes a simple drawing on the board while recording instructions e.g. draw a line from top to bottom, draw a circle in the top left hand corner. They hide their drawing under a coloured square, then the second student comes to the board and recreates the drawing, listening to the instructions from the first student.

10. Representing numbers. A student records a number as a sound clip e.g. “ten thousand, three hundred and seventy one”. Another student listens to the sound clip and uses virtual MABs or number arrows on the board to represent the number.

11. Recording instructions. The microphone makes it easy to use your board as a learning station. Leave the activity on the board (e.g. sort 3D shapes into groups according to their properties). In addition to your written instructions for the activity, record these instructions. Students who have trouble reading instructions can then listen to them and read them simultaneously, then work independently of the teacher.


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Recording sound on your IWB

Posted by rosiemacalpine on December 11, 2008

Recording sound for your IWB activities is an exciting way to make interactive presentations for your class. To do this, you will need:

  • A microphone
  • Speakers
  • Software to record sound (such as Activstudio)

First, the microphone. In my experience, you don’t need a particularly expensive one to get started. The most important thing is that it is near the board. If your computer is at the other side of the room then ask for an extension cord at your local electronic shop.

If your microphone isn’t working or is too quiet, go into the sound control settings and make sure that Microphone volume is turned up. Sometimes there is an advanced setting in this volume control. If so, check this. You may have the option of turning on Microphone Booster. This makes a HUGE difference to the volume.

I visited one school where they hung the microphone over the corner of the board so it would pick up any volume near the board. I prefer the handheld option myself (mostly because of the volume restrictions).

When you got your board, hopefully you had decent speakers installed –  not just the computer monitor speakers. (Although this is a great way to get a class to be very, very quiet when they watch a DVD!) If not, this might be a good time to see if you can get better speakers for your room.

And finally, you will need software to record sound. Activstudio includes a Sound Recorder (it’s in the Power Tools Toolbox). Click on this icon to record your sound. When you’ve finished, you have a icon on your page.  Click on it to hear the sound, or drag it into your Resource Library to save it for another time.

If you don’t have Activstudio or other whiteboard software that will let you record sound, there are some other options.

Audacity: This is a free, powerful audio recorder. I haven’t had much experience with it but I know it is very popular and widely used.I just can’t help wishing that it had a simpler, more attractive interface for teachers and students.


Vocaroo: This is even easier! Record your voice online, then share it via an email, website or download as a WAV. (Wouldn’t it be a lovely way for a child to send good news about test results, or a merit certificate to a working parent via email?)


Tomorrow’s post will have ten teaching ideas for using recorded audio in your teaching.

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