Splashtop is a company that “aspires to touch people’s lives by delivering… remote desktop experiences- bridging tablets, phones, computers, and TVs.” In addition to multiple other applications, like the award winning Splashtop Remote Desktop, Splashtop created a unique app for the classroom. Splashtop Whiteboard allows teachers and other users to turn their IPad into an interactive whiteboard. Once the application is downloaded to the computer and the IPad, Splashtop Whiteboard allows users to annotate over the computer and interactive whiteboard, such as Promethean Board or SMART board, through the IPad. The IPad is connected to the computer through Wifi, which is essential for the app to function.
Elementary and High school educators alike will find that they are completely in control over the app; allowing them to roam around the room rather than sitting by the computer. This allows teachers to continually monitor their students. Moreover, through the app, teachers are able to annotate over any content, including video and PowerPoint. The provided tool bar has pens, highlighters, a keyboard, and blank documents. Teachers and students are able to draw and highlight on the document, take a screen shot, and email the new saved version to parents or even students who missed class that day. Another feature is the lifelike play back of videos and audio in high definition. There are no sync sessions, providing fast and easy viewing.
Teachers are not the only users who can benefit from this app in the classroom; students can too! Through activities like “pass the IPad,” teachers can involve students in the instruction as they pass the IPad around the room, adding comments and answering questions on the board. An example of this in a 2nd or 3rd grade classroom; although it can be applied in classrooms through college.
Splashtop.com has provided a wonderful video for first time users and those hoping to learn more about the application.
St. Thomas School is working toward implementing Promethean Boards in each classroom, as well as purchasing an IPad cart. They are a blossoming school, but still lack the necessary technology for each classroom. The implementation of this app would allow teachers to work freely around the classroom, while using an interactive whiteboard to its fullest capacity. Assume that all classroom now have an ActivBoard and access to IPads, the main objective of the intervention is to implement applications, such as Splashtop Whiteboard to increase the use of technology in the classroom and provide a technology encompassed classroom for today's 21st century learners. With support, funding, and an adequate plan, St. Thomas will be able to achieve this objective.
St. Thomas will purchase the app for 2-3 technology teachers to pilot a test program. Therefore the first part of the implementation program will be the test of this application. The technology team will evaluate if there is increase student involvement and are educators fully utilizing the app to improve their teaching implementation.
Once the technology team decides that the key questions for evaluation are met, the principal and education commission will be notified of the results. With their discretion, other educators in the building will be given the recommendation to purchase and implement Splashtop Whiteboard.
Educators will be educated in the reason for the involvement of Splashtop Whiteboard. As supported by the social constructivist theory, Splashtop Whiteboard allows students be become active learners. It is an additional tool to use with the interactive whiteboard. As teachers learn the place for the app in the classroom, they will begin to improve their development with the app, educators will utilize their technology team and watch webinars. After their knowledge base is secure, educators will begin their use of the app in the classroom. They will be expected to use the application at least once a week from November 2013 to January of 2014. After each week or use of the device, the educators will be expected to fill out a teacher survey answering questions. All inventories are required at the faculty meeting at the end of the month of January.
Evaluation Stakeholders have an invested interest in the process and the outcome of the evaluation. They may be referred to as the “intended users of evaluation findings” (Patton, 1997). The key stakeholders in Splashtop Whiteboard are as follows:
Primary Stakeholders: St. Thomas Catholic Schools primarily runs on donations made by individuals in the community who donations with the expectations that specific improvements will be made. Those individuals and the small group of staff members responsible for the programs implementation (Priest, Principal, Chairs of the Education Commission, and two teachers) are the primary stakeholders in implementing this application.
Secondary Stakeholders: Additional Staff members that may implement the app later on, students of St. Thomas School, and parents of the school have an important interest in the program and the outcome of the evaluation.
Tertiary Stakeholders: Individuals who are part of the Education Commission has interest in the evaluation for future planning and future families of St. Thomas would have interest in the evaluations results.
Evaluations Key Questions
1. How will the implementation of Splashtop Whiteboard effect the interaction and involvement of students in the classroom?
2. How will the purchase of this application benefit educators and students alike in comparison to purchasing other interactive applications or remote desktop experiences? Is this purchase worthwhile?
Data Collection and Analysis
In an effort to implement and introduce Splashtop Whiteboard into classrooms, two teachers who are knowledgeable and frequently integrate new ideas will jump start the usage in the Fall of 2013. The Education Commission is willing to put forth a set amount of money to purchase this application using donations intended for the development of technology. The teachers will listen to available webinars and videos in addition to accessing any other resources to strengthen their knowledge base. Once they are educated, these two teachers will use and troubleshoot the application until they are comfortable sharing their experience with fellow teachers. These teachers will be expected to share by November of 2013, when the remainder of the teachers will begin to implement the application. Educators will be expected to use the application at least once a week from November 2013 to January of 2014. After each week or use of the device, the educators will be expected to fill out a Teacher Survey answering questions. All inventories are required at the faculty meeting at the end of the month of January.
Other means of evaluation include surveys taken by the students and faculty members who are using the devices, and video observation of user implementing the app in the classroom to share with the Education Commissions when the results are presented at the February 2014 meeting. All surveys must be complete one week prior to the presentation.
1. Students were found to interactive more with the application in place, than a traditional classroom. The hands-on experience with IPad through whole group instruction was productive. Teachers in the Junior High classrooms reported using the application to involve a third students in addition to the duel user function with students at the ActivBoard. A kindergarten teacher commented how she liked how she could move around the classroom and be next to students, rather than be at the board having to write so that she could still watch the students. This application proved to be successful from both a teacher and student perspective.
2. Educators found this app to be an additional to using the interactive whiteboards already in the classroom. It was not a replacement tool because they felt as though they already had the necessary tools; this was just a bonus. When asked if this was a worthwhile purchase, educators, students, and other stakeholders found is tool to be a useful tool and were happy it was now a part of their classrooms.
With any plan to intervene, there are risks; especially when dealing with new technologies in the classroom.
The first risk is teacher involvement. Whether the teacher is not comfortable with the app or technologies, they prefer to use other tools, or the app is not condusive to their classroom given unforseen circumstances with students or outside factors, it is difficult to anticipate whether Splashtop Whiteboard will be used to its fullest capacity.
Another risk involved with this intervention is money. The application costs $20. Purchasing an app for each homeroom teacher in the building would be $1600. With a limited budget for apps on the IPad, St. Thomas may not be able to allow teachers to purchase other apps that they may use more because money was spent on Splashtop Whiteboard. Another risk associated with this is that the app may only be able to be purchased for a set number of devices due to budget.
A third risk to evaluation is the internet connection of the school. Upon determing whether the school's system can hold multiple devices acting wirelessly, stakeholders need to evaluate if pursuing additional technology is the best choice. Although the classroom teachers will not be solely relying on this app as their main form of teaching, it is a valuable tool in student interaction. Teachers will need to be prepared to teach without this tool or any other internet based tool if the internet was down.
More than 20 millions educators across the U.S. made Splashtop Whiteboard a daily tool in their classroom.
An education app Review site produced by a group of teachers commented that "this app, used to control other classroom media, is a classroom instructional technology revolution in application form. Initially, you need to download a small program from their website and install it on the computer you are using. It is amazingly well designed! It is wonderfully intuitive, smooth and glitch free. You can control virtually all programs and videos remotely, and what I really liked about it was it allows you to write on top of everything you can put on display. It will allow you to remotely operate and write on top of Word, Google Earth, PowerPoint, Key Note, and even Promethean and Smart Board applications. Did I mention you can write on top of your presentation? I've always wanted to do this in the classroom. Splashtop Whiteboard can help you highlight, draw and type in many different fonts and modes. I can't wait to use this in class this fall, as I plan to use it as a foundation for Promethean and virtually all graphic-based instructional media. It is the application that I've been looking for that integrates instructional technology with remote operation and graphical input."
Another teacher that uses this application writes blog entries about her experiences with Splashtop Whiteboard. Her reaction to the usage is as follows:
"I would really encourage you to consider the freedom of Splashtop on the iPad. Walking around the classroom, visiting groups of students or handing the iPad to a student to interact with the lesson are just a few reasons to consider this cool tool. For teachers who already have an interactive white board in their classroom, this app works in conjunction with what you are already doing, but gives you the ability to remove yourself from the stage. For teachers that do not have an interactive whiteboard in their classroom, Splashtop provides a collaborative and interactive experience that can be shared with the students at the fraction of the cost of a full size whiteboard. I love the idea of interactive whiteboards in the classroom, but as I travel around I see too many teachers using it only as a big screen or stuck in the front of the room. Splashtop gives the true intention of engagement with a whiteboard back to the teacher. Once you see it in action, you’ll get it. Seeing is believing."
Outside of Spalshtop, I have yet to find another app that is quite like this experience. Promethean does offer an additional tool to the purchase of their interative whiteboards that allows users to annotation over the board. "ActivSlate" is a wireless device similar to the IPad, that allows you to control the ActivBoard from anywhere in the classroom. The only downfall to this device is that it does not have a screen that shows the picture of the screen you are working with; rather users will "write" on the ActivSlate using the ActivPen and look at the board. This does take some practice, but can be mastered within a short period of time.
Top 10 teaching Apps for your Classroom. (2013). Retrieved February 2013, from Education App Reviews: http://educationappreviews.com/
Seddon, K. (2012, April 24). Splashtop Whiteboard. Retrieved February 2013, from Tuesday with Karen: http://tuesdayswithkaren.blogspot.com/2012/04/splashtop.html Splashtop. (2013). Retrieved February 9, 2013, from Splashtop: http://www.splashtop.com/whiteboard#overview-tab
Splashtop Whiteboards. (2013). Retrieved February 9, 2013, from Splashtop: http://www.splashtop.com/whiteboard#overview-tab