The whiteboard is the primary interactive element of the virtual classroom. It’s a white background where you can upload files, draw a variety of shapes, type text and basically do anything you would on a standard classroom whiteboard. In order to make all that possible, the whiteboard comes with a variety of tools, which allow you to create and modify items, as well as modify your view depending on your needs. Below is a table detailing all of the available whiteboard tools in the virtual classroom.
The following tools are visible only when you select an object with the select tool.
We will continue with a breakdown of the above tools, their functions and tips on utilizing them on the whiteboard.
To select objects on the whiteboard, click on the select tool (Mouse), then on the element you want to edit. Once you have selected the element you will see markers for resizing and rotating. You can use this both for files you have imported on the whiteboard, as well as objects you have created using one of the other whiteboard tools.
The pan tool (Pan) allows you to move the whiteboard in order to see all of the objects in the room more clearly. The whiteboard has no specific borders and you can move around it infinitely in any direction. The part of the dashboard you can see at any time is only limited by your screen resolution.
The brush tool (Brush) aids the tutor in sketching objects on the whiteboard, e.g. in sketching lines, rectangles, circles, ellipses, etc. Additionally, you can use this tool with a graphics tablet.
The pointer tool (Pointer) aids the tutor in highlighting a part of a text or a picture he or she may have on the whiteboard. The trail of the pointer tool dissolves after a few seconds and does not stay permanently on the whiteboard. This makes it an excellent short-term highlighting tool, which doesn’t create clutter on the whiteboard.
The system also has a convenient text editor tool that allows simultaneous writing and editing by many participants.
To use it select the text tool (Text). Make sure it is selected (Text) and then click with the mouse on the canvas where you want the text to appear – this opens the text editor.
Now you can start writing text and it will appear on the canvas at the same time. Everyone who has access to see the whiteboard will read while you type. When ready, click the Done button or Minimize the box.
NOTE: Тo edit other participants’ text elements you need to have the permission to Edit Whiteboard Objects.
The line tool (Line) aids the tutor in drawing straight lines onto the whiteboard. You can use the line tool to underline a certain portion of text or build a geometric shape with several mouse gestures.
The Rectangle/Square tool (Rectangle/Square) allows you to create rectangles, squares or free hand rectangles. The free hand function means that you can simply sketch the outlines of a rectangle as if using the brush tool and it will be automatically converted into a rectangle with the same dimensions. (Rectangle/Square)
The Ellipse tool (Ellipse) allows you to create ellipses, circles. As with the rectangle tool above, this tool also offers a free hand drawing option. (Circle/Ellipse)
The pre-defined shapes tool (Shape library) allows you to tap into a library of pre-defined shapes, which you may use in your lessons.
Select element fill color (Element fill color) – select the element and then choose from the Fill Color Palette.
Choose element stroke color (Stroke color) – select the element and then choose from the Stroke color palette.Change element stroke width (Stroke Width) – select the element and then choose the Stroke width .
You can zoom in or out on the whiteboard using the combination Alt+Mouse Scroll or via the magnifying glass tools: (Zoom In/Zoom Out)
You can go back to the whiteboard’s default view using the Center Canvas tool: (Center Canvas)
This brings you back to the center of the whiteboard where you start out by default. It is useful if you’ve moved far from the center while using the pan tool and want to go back.
The Grid tool (Grid) can be used to apply a grid to the whiteboard and is useful if you’re teaching mathematics or economics, for example.
Undo (Undo) Step back in drawing (50 steps limit) only available with the permission to Edit All Objects
Redo (Redo) Step forward in drawing (50 steps limit) only available with the permission to Edit All Objects
Private elements (Padlock) When this is locked, new elements created by you are private and only visible to you.
Duplicate / Copy element – select the element(s) and right-click Copy (Ctrl+C) then Paste (Ctrl+V) or select the Duplicate tool (Duplicate) that creates duplicate element right next to the original.
You can also use standard desktop shortcuts, such as: Ctrl+A (Select All), Ctrl+C (Copy), Ctrl+V (Paste), Ctrl+X (Cut)
Delete element (Trashcan) – there are several ways to delete elements. Select the element(s) and press the Delete button or right-click and select “Delete”. You can also use the keyboard buttons Del and Backspace.
Up next, we’ll have a look at the way to organize your whiteboard content using pages.