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Benefits of Using an IFP Whiteboard vs. a Dry Erase Board

Benefits of Using an IFP Whiteboard vs. a Dry Erase Board

With so many technological advances in all industries across the board, it's no surprise that schools are catching on to the trends slowly taking over. One such advancement is the introduction of interactive flat panels (IFP) or smart boards in a classroom setting. Many teachers will agree that student participation is always encouraged but not always acted on, sometimes hindering the learning process altogether.

Using an IFP whiteboard is steadily changing this perception, and it's also leading to an increase in student engagement. When compared to a dry erase board, IFP whiteboards have made leaps and bounds in bridging the gap between students who want to learn and having the necessary and effective tools to help them. Read on for more on the differences between these modern and traditional mediums and the benefits of an IFP whiteboard in the classroom.

What Is an IFP Whiteboard?

Interactive flat panels, also called smart boards or interactive displays have recently gained popularity in schools. They are presented as flat screens that allow interactive participation through the use of a stylus or finger to write and annotate on. The screens can accommodate various multimedia content simultaneously, including videos, images, presentations and educational websites.

IFPs are generally mounted over a traditional chalkboard or whiteboard and used as an alternative, although some sliding mounts allow the IFP to move across horizontally to allow users to write on the board beneath.

The Benefits of an IFP Whiteboard

An IFP whiteboard has numerous advantages that are far-reaching for students and teachers alike. The following benefits show why they are such a great investment for any institution, whether a school or business.

Visual Learning

According to research, 65% of people are visual learners who retain information better through imagery and color. Disengagement becomes an issue when students lose interest in content, often due to difficulty connecting to the material. While teachers often do a great job of engaging students with thoughtful lesson plans, some challenges are out of their control.

An interactive flat panel resolves issues with engagement by displaying an array of multimedia content on a large screen, in real-time. It is akin to having your smartphone projected onto a whiteboard, with the ability to touch the screen to prompt changes like a handheld device.

There are endless possibilities for what interactive boards can do to make a teaching lesson fun and engaging. Students are not confined to their seats and are encouraged to get up and approach the board to express their ideas, answers, suggestions and other creative thought processes. In this way, visual learning becomes an action through IFP whiteboards.

Improve Technology Fluency

Although most children in U.S. households possess smartphones, not all use them for educational purposes. The younger generations are exposed to a lot more and have become increasingly tech-savvy over the years, which has its own advantages and disadvantages. Despite learning more on their smartphones, they are not necessarily gaining the right skills to apply this knowledge in learning environments.

Using smart boards in schools helps students identify and associate with educational apps and other learning resources that can help improve their technology fluency. They are not limited to playing meaningless games and using instant messenger apps so they can explore valuable, informative content that they can practice at home, too.

Save on Maintenance and Cleanup

Another advantage of an IFP is that it requires little maintenance to keep it clean. Unlike the traditional dry erase board, it does not need markers and spray to write text and remove it. Constant finger-writing may require frequent dusting, but this is easily done using a damp or dry microfiber cloth with minimal pressure. Avoid using alcohol and ammonia-based cleaning solutions when cleaning the surface. You may use vinegar-based solutions as an alternative.

If your IFP has a tray for holding your stylus and other tools, ensure it is free of dust and include it in your cleaning process. Since there is no need for permanent markers or dry erase markers with an IFP, it means you won't have to make repeat trips to the store to purchase markers or deal with issues like running out of ink in the middle of a lesson.

Why Choose an IFP Over a Dry Erase Board?

Dry erase boards are the traditional whiteboards found in most classrooms. They are made of impermeable materials that enable users to write on them with markers without the need for spray to remove the text. All you need to wipe it is a dry cloth, hence the name dry erase. However, there are a few limitations of these boards, some of which include:

  • Glare: The reflective surface of a whiteboard often leaves students squinting due to glare from lights and windows. Those sitting at the back of the class are especially susceptible to this, and it could impact a student's learning.

  • Cost: While a dry erase board may initially cost less to purchase than an interactive display, you will regularly spend money on markers that dry up with constant use. Even though you only need a cloth to wipe text, most boards require specific alcohol-based sprays to keep the surface clean of marker residue. This is an additional cost associated with maintaining these boards.

  • Health hazards: For younger students in particular, markers and whiteboard cleaning sprays may pose health hazards if they come in contact with the eyes, nose or mouth.

  • Limited functionality: More than one user can write on a dry erase board — however, any important information will eventually need to be erased to make room for new information, making it hard for trailing students to keep up. They are effective tools for brainstorming ideas since they have large areas to write on but you will need to sectionalize the board to add new content alongside existing text. It is also limited to writing and can not facilitate multimedia content.

Interactive Whiteboard Mounting Solutions From AV Mounts USA

While smart boards are a great solution to integrating technology in the classroom, teachers and administrators also see the value in having traditional whiteboards available for use. AV Mounts USA has a solution for those who want the best of both worlds. We manufacture over-the-board mounts that secure interactive displays over existing whiteboards. Enjoy all the benefits of a smart board while still being able to use the whiteboard or chalkboard behind it.

Our mounts are durable, affordable, quick and easy to install — anyone can do it. Call us at (717)610-0783 to discuss your requirements or contact us online for purchase inquiries.


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