Interactive whiteboards in EFL from the teachers’ and students’ perspective
Christina Nicole Giannikas
Recent disseminated research findings have shown that ELT can be enhanced by effective uses of new technologies; the present paper examines the current use of Interactive Whiteboards (IWBs) in English Language Teaching (ELT) and learning of children aged nine to sixteen years old in South-western Greece. The small-scale study concentrates on both teachers’ and children’s perceptions regarding the use of the technology in question. The data referred to in the current paper derives from five teachers’ interviews. The teachers who participated had not undertaken any form of training on the use of IWBs. There were 55 students who completed questionnaires and evaluation forms. The study revealed that there were pedagogical limitations in the effective application and use of the software. Due to lack of professional training on its use, and reluctance of moving away from a teacher-centred approach practitioners were familiar with, IWBs were not used to their full potential. The teachers’ main setback was that they had difficulty managing and combining the use of technology and pedagogy in order to create an environment where students could actively participate and interact in the classroom. The present research suggests that with appropriate teacher training, feedback and time for professional development, YL teachers will be more equipped to apply the benefits and interactive nature of the IWB in the language classroom.
Key words: Interactive Whiteboards, Young Learners, socio-constructive approach, new technologies, L2 development