www.smartkapp.com ■ Retail Price: $899
This dry erase board allows you to capture, save, share, and collaborate with your content via apps and browsers in real time.
Quality and Effectiveness: The SMART kapp board, at 42”, was easy to figure out and easy to use. I can imagine teachers, myself included, beginning an idea with the board, building on the idea for several iterations, and then opening up a larger discussion after that. All the content can be created dynamically, saved, and shared in PDF format for later analysis and collaboration. The board must be turned on to record; I realized this after the students began to make positive comments that were not captured until I copied them afterward. Many students offered to assist me so I knew the board was highly attractive to them for jotting down their ideas.
Ease of Use: I was delighted that it only took about two minutes for me and two fifth grade students to figure out how to use the SMART kapp board. Everything a teacher needs is provided: a code to share with students who have devices, a link to share with external participants, including possible external experts and the constant option to save as PDF or JPEG files, which can be shared by numerous methods (Dropbox, Evernote, etc.).The instructional materials are more than ample to help anyone get started and for those who prefer to open, tap, and weave their way along, the SMART kapp board is so easy to understand that teachers will want one in every learning space, pronto.
Creative Use of Technology: This newly evolved product builds on the best SMART functions and takes a big step forward. Each session has a unique code for participants to freely use with a tablet, iPad, smartphone, or PC (any device with a browser). This means anyone can connect and follow along from anywhere in the world. Participants at a distance can engage as smoothly as the participants in the room. When the session is over, participants can save all the slide iterations in PDF format for universal sharing. If your school, like mine, is looking for international collaboration opportunities, the SMART kapp board and related technologies offer a rich and rewarding way to interact globally. The board I tested came with black dry markers; more vibrant colors will help distinguish the visuals. Write LARGE on the board, because it will be easier to read, and you can save as many slides as your idea needs.
Suitability for Use in a School Environment: The SMART kapp board can be smoothly integrated anywhere people need to communicate and collaborate. The smooth board is great for drawing out ideas or elaborating on premises. I look forward to variously colored pens, as it will be easier to change perspective or version and highlight changes if multiple colored pens are available.
I highly recommend the SMART kapp board. And if a school opted for the VFI mobile stand ($822) so the board could be effortlessly moved around, that would be ideal. I could imagine wheeling the board to various nooks in the library or other unique learning spaces. Students (and teachers) are often inspired by helpful products, such as this one, that ease the way to creating, communicating, and collaborating.
• SMART kapp board provides a way to capture dynamic content in multiple ways.
• SMART kapp board is easy to learn, easy to use, and easy to keep clean.
• SMART kapp board can be installed in smaller learning spaces to encourage collaborative groups to easily share each iteration of their processes.