Managing Marker Boards in the Classroom

You have students pull out their individual marker boards to work on.  You use these boards as a form of formative assessment.  The students that you know have mastered the skill are listening to your every word.  They are diligently answering every question and using the marker board and the marker exactly as they should be used.  Then you have those who like to draw, write notes, spin markers on the board, create contraptions using the eraser and marker, etc.  You name it, things get crazy!  Sound familiar?!?!

Managing Marker Boards

I LOVE my students using marker boards.   Not only does it increase student engagement, but they are great for seeing where students are at a glance.  I am not willing to give this tool up!!  As a result, I have what we call “doodle time”.  It is such a simple concept, yet every year it amazes me at how well students respond to it!

Doodle time

When we begin using marker boards, I lay out my hard core rules.

  • Your marker must remained capped until I tell you to use it.
  • You may only write on the board when you are prompted.
  • If you are caught drawing on the board, you will use paper/pencil instead and lose doodle time.

I told you these rules were hard core! 🙂

If students follow these hard core rules, they will get one entire minute of doodle time before we put up the boards.  They absolutely LOVE doodle time!!  They get to draw on their marker board with those oh so special Expo markers.

This idea may sound a bit juvenile for upper grades, but trust me it works!!

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