Kami Connect Speaker Sessions | Oliver Tingling

Today is all about learning the many tools of Kami and how they can be used to help change the way you whiteboard in the classroom! For a little context, I’ve been trying to find unique ways to empower my students through learning, and having these whiteboards has been the answer!

Whiteboarding has become very important to me; especially when we stayed home for long periods of time and there was no physical board for students to see my math problems and how we solved them at the same time. When it comes to impactful whiteboarding, practice makes perfect and I was determined to find a solution – get it?

So, I’m here to help you utilize the different Kami tools to make amazing whiteboarding experiences, not only for you but for your students and colleagues too!

Why use digital whiteboards?

Creating fun and engaging activities is a huge reason to have a digital whiteboard that can be shared anywhere in the world with just a link! You can extend your student learning beyond the classroom which means I can collaborate with others from the comfort of my home or anywhere I have a WiFi connection. I can go from meeting to meeting and still collaborate with students or fellow teachers. Students also have the ability to meet up with each other over the weekend when they have a project and have everything they need, without having to wait until school was in session.

I also love giving personalized feedback to the students in the whiteboarding session. Sometimes students forget what I said to them and I can be a bit forgetful as well. So what I can do within these whiteboards is leave comments! With Kami, I have the ability to leave voice, video, and screen sharing comments within the document I shared and I can literally say what I mean. I have saved a lot of students from being too confused or going way off topic because we were able to communicate via the digital whiteboard. It’s really that simple!

More benefits of digital whiteboarding include:

  • Your work gets automatically saved to Google Drive or One Drive
  • You never have to worry about “losing it” or a “dog eating it”
  • Valuable work won’t get lost from the board getting erased.

How to get Kami on your computer

First is by the way of the Google Chrome extension. All you have to do is search for the extension and simply download. Another option is to go to the dashboard at kami.app and you’re good to go!

Now that you’re on the dashboard, you can create pages to get started with your whiteboard. You have the ability to create a blank page, music page, lined paper, and a grid page! Plus, you can add as many you desire in case students need more than one board to work from. You can change up the landscape if you need to depending on your or your students’ preferences.

For example, say I’ve created a simple interest worksheet for students and have embedded a video with instructions on how to use the Drawing Tool. They have the ability to then write down notes from that page and work on the problems I gave them, exactly how I’ve requested. I also have examples of physics worksheets where students preferred to use the different colors within the Drawing Tool to distinguish different types of motion happening within a problem. I also have another example of students using their digital whiteboard to create a study guide for themselves. It’s truly amazing to see and hear the conversations that are happening within the group and how they want to keep things pretty organized!

My digital whiteboard set up
  • I own a Pixelbook and Pixelbook Pen which allow me to draw directly onto the computer.
  • I have a projector with Google Chromecast for the purpose of a wireless connection from my computer to the projector. So when I write on my computer, it will display on the board in class in real-time.
  • And last but not least, some eager students ready to get their learn on!

I also love to use templates to quickly and easily create engaging lessons. In particular, the Graffiti Wall template, complete with some open-ended questions when I want my students to engage in some deep thinking, or for a warm-up at times. You can find a tonne of templates to supplement your digital whiteboard over on the Kami library!

As a math teacher, Kami’s also awesome for drawing straight lines when we graph equations. With the use of holding the shift key and drawing, the program gives me a very straight line.

Some of the other tools I utilize are:

  • Equation Tool for the various symbols used within math or science
  • Shape Tool when I want to tell my students to box or finalize their answers
  • Markup Tool to highlight important text or instructions within a document
  • Control Features allows me (the owner of the whiteboard) to direct which tools I want students to use
  • Collaborating and Sharing features. You can’t have a game-changing digital whiteboard without sharing them with the world!!

So now that we’re all super excited to use all of these features, let’s just summarize what we covered today:

  • More use of digital whiteboards saves you valuable time and saves back a heap of paper!
  • Digital whiteboard gives more room and empowerment for collaborating from peer-to-peer and student-to-student.
  • You can use Kami on any computer as long as you are connected to the internet (but they also support offline use).
  • Personalized feedback helps you stay connected with all students and colleagues.
  • Encouraging the use of the Kami tools helps empower and keep your students engaged!

And that’s a wrap! I hope you got your learn on. I always love sharing my tips and tricks with you all. If you have any Kami Whiteboarding tips of your own, I would love to learn from you too – let’s chat on Twitter, Instagram, or email!