Sunday, November 9, 2014

Talkboard: Create. Together.

Have you heard of Talkboard yet? From what I have seen, I’m really excited about what’s possible!

Here’s how the company describes their app:
Talkboard: Ideas without boundaries
Talkboard is a collaborative whiteboarding app for iPad that lets you sketch out ideas and work on them with others.

Talkboard is a live, collaborative whiteboard that students can use on their iPad. They don’t even need to be in the same classroom, they can be on different wi-fi networks and still be able to work together.  The app even allows participants to chat live which could make any work done outside of class easier. The final product can be exported as a PDF or as an image. Bonus: the app links to their Google Apps account so if you're in a GAFE school they don't have another login/password combo to remember.

My colleague & I spent some time working with it, and I created some ‘how to’ Skitch pics to introduce you to the app.  I also tried it in class, having my students collaborate in lab groups, using the app to write their procedure out together.  (The purpose of the lab activity was to practice writing a clear, concise procedure.)  It worked well!  The drawback was that there are a lot of colors and pen choices to choose from so some students had trouble focussing on writing their directions & instead wanted to draw. I anticipated this possibility because it’s a risk that comes with trying something new in class; like me, some of them needed time to play around with the app before getting serious.  

Our engineering teacher is probably the most excited to use this app.  He has been looking for a program that would allow students to collaborate virtually on the engineering design process [ask→ imagine→ plan→ create→ improve] but needed more than what Google Docs can currently offer.

So what do you think?  Is there a better collaborative app that allows students to work together at the same time?  Have you looked at BaiBoard?  I wonder if it’s similar?  I’ll check it out.