Of what value is a data projector in my classroom?

Thursday, December 16th, 2010 | technology

A single computer or laptop has little teaching value to a teacher in the classroom.  The main difficulty is that it is hardly possible for large groups of learners to see what happens on the small screen – this problem is solved by a data projector.

How does it work?  A data projector takes whatever is on the screen of the computer, and throws the image on a suitable surface – a wall or a screen.  You can enlarge the picture to any size you like – the further you move the data projector from the wall or screen, the bigger the picture will be.

The data projector is a huge step up from the old overhead projector, which also allows you to enlarge images for the entire class to see.  Data projectors do far more than simply enlarging pictures.  Because it is linked to your computer, you can do many things you can’t do with an overhead projector.  Here are a few examples:

With the use of special programs – called presentation software – you can prepare lessons beforehand and with a click of the button you move from one “page” to another.  No more slides to make, sort and handle!

With your computer you can find pictures and diagrams and work them into your presentations – even video clips can become part of your lesson.

If you have internet access in your classroom you can link to it in real time with your computer and display images to the class.  This helps you to take advantage of unexpected “teaching moments” – a learner may ask a question, and instead of giving the answer, you have the opportunity to show the entire class how research on the internet is done to find answers to questions.

Lessons can be saved for successive classes.  While presenting the lesson, you may feel the need to change or add something for future use.  All you have to do is change the presentation on your computer – only a few clicks are required – and it will be ready for display through your data projector for the next lesson.

When you bring technology in the classroom, a data projector should be high on your list of priorities.

For more technology tips for teachers click here.

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3 Comments to Of what value is a data projector in my classroom?

Mark C
Thursday, 16 December, 2010

Has Albie shown you his mini-data projector from Samsung? Maybe you should mail him to blog on it.

[...] though it is advisable for data projectors to be permanently fixed in classrooms – preferably suspended from the ceiling – this is not [...]

[...] though it is advisable for data projectors to be permanently fixed in classrooms – preferably suspended from the ceiling – this is not [...]

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