I began using personal whiteboard markers in 2010 and saw an immediate benefit for my students. There seems to be such freedom in the non-permanence of math work. I have read and heard of Peter Liljedahl’s work and one of my future goals is to get enough vertical whiteboards for all my students to have room to work.
I started using vertical surfaces / windows, etc in my last couple of years teaching, also after attending a session with Peter Liljedahl. I don’t do it every single day, but the first thing students do as they walk into my room is see if I have “V/S” written on the board. I noticed student engagement go up dramatically.
I’ve used mini-whiteboards intermittently and done a “3-2-1 show me” method, which worked pretty well with engagement. With some of my smaller classes throughout the years, I’ve tried using the VNPS in my classroom though. I’ve found that when I continually use them, the engagement is quite high, but I need to use them for the project or tasks. I’ve noticed that procedural practice, or method practice the engagement isn’t as high as with problems or tasks.
Has anyone else seen this in their engagement level with the use of small whiteboards vs VNPS?
I’d agree that practicing procedures or strategies would promote less engagement because thinking is low. They are just applying the same skill to different numbers and thus it is inherently not engaging.
I have used individual lap boards before. I really like the vertical method better. There is better buy in from the students. I also let the students write on the desks with the dry erase markers. They kept asking, “It’s OK to write on the desks?” Amazing that all of a suddenly they want to do the math work because now they CAN write on the desks. I expect this to fade over the year and will go back and forth between my vertical boards and the desks.