3. They Encourage Creativity & Interaction
Traditionally used in classrooms in a very formal way, chalkboards have long been considered a valuable learning aid. However, when moved out of a classroom environment and installed in a play space, either indoors or outdoors, chalkboards can be extremely beneficial when it comes to both creativity and interaction.
Giving a child a chalkboard as a blank canvas on which to express their ideas is a fantastic way to encourage creativity. Supplying chalks in a variety of colours means they can express their innermost thoughts in a very sensory way. The feel of the chalk and chalkboard together is a very satisfying experience for children as it differs wildly from the pen-to-paper sensation they’re often familiar with.
In addition, setting up a chalkboard location where children play together in a free and unstructured way helps them to learn social skills through play, such as learning to share. It can also help develop communication skills such as asking for help, requesting to join in, choosing favourite colours and discussing with their peers the artwork they are creating together.
4. Ideal For Early Years
When used in a primary school environment, chalkboards can help young students to develop both their fine motor skills through drawing and writing with chalk sticks, as well as improve balance, posture and muscle tone through writing on a vertical surface. Benefits of chalkboards for young children include:
- Hand-Eye Coordination - a natural benefit of practising writing, scribbling on a chalkboard naturally helps to improve hand-eye coordination.
- Core Strength and Posture - children must engage their core and back muscles to maintain an upright posture at a vertical chalkboard.
- Fine Motor Skills - writing on a vertical surface puts the wrist into an extended position. Children must stabilise their hands for better control of the chalk stick.
- Shoulder/Elbow Stability - writing on large chalkboard surfaces encourages bigger arm movements that improve strength and flexibility.
- Spatial Awareness - a great way to teach kids the variances of ‘up, down, left and right’ with regards to drawing positions in relation to their own bodies.
- Visual Attention - children who struggle to maintain visual attention to activities can benefit from working on a vertical surface, as it brings the task closer to their eyes.
- Change of Position - children who struggle to concentrate at a desk environment may appreciate a change of position to help them refocus.
5. They are Ideal for Outdoor Learning
While whiteboards have replaced chalkboards as the traditional indoor learning aid, when it comes to outdoor learning, a chalkboard is an ideal prop. Chalkboards are weatherproof, versatile and lightweight, meaning teachers can carry them outside to conduct lessons or research projects with students in the great outdoors. Outdoor learning has been shown to be an incredibly effective addition to a school curriculum. Outdoor learning activities have positive effects on all their various outcomes, e.g., attitudes, beliefs, interpersonal and social skills, academic skills, positive behaviour, re-offending rates and self-image. Giving students a chance to ‘break out’ of the usual confinements of a classroom and learn in a different environment is incredibly beneficial to their confidence, and chalkboards support outdoor learning through their durability and versatility.
For more information on Outdoor Chalkboards or any of our Wipe Boards please get in touch with our team via our Contact Us page or by calling 01234 676767.