Instructional Strategies to Integrate with Google Jamboard to Amplify Learning

By: Matt Rhoads, Ed.D

Dr. Matt Rhoads is a Tech and Instructional Leader and Innovator with hands in Adult Ed, K-12, and Higher Education. He is the author of several books and is the host of Navigating Education – The Podcast.

Google Jamboard, like Google Slides, has many opportunities to integrate various instructional strategies to amplify student learning. Google Jamboard is an interactive slide that can act as a template for many strategies and activities in your classroom (see this blog to learn about how to use it). Like slides, it has an ease of use for students and teachers alike. Coupled with the many templates we can create or add on various applications like slides, Canva, and Adobe, the opportunities are endless to set up Jamboard with instructional strategies to amplify student learning. 

The goal is to illustrate a number of instructional strategies integrated with Jamboard and provide the steps on how to implement them. They are routines and protocols to ensure that we put our students in the right positions at the right time. We will cover a number of strategies relating to the following:

  • Activating Prior Knowledge
  • Reading Comprehension
    • SWBST Chart
    • Brain Dump
    • Main, Idea, Key Detail, & Summary
  • Summarization and Reflection

Let’s dive into each of these strategies we can integrate with Google Jamboard!

Note: Thank you to TCEA for providing educators with such a resource of templates (which will be provided later) to help support the use of Google Jamboard and incorporate the strategies mentioned here.

Activating Prior Knowledge & Reflection – KWL Chart

For this strategy, you begin your lesson by asking what students know about the topic of the lesson. Then, you ask a follow-up question with what they want to know. You will then leave the Jamboard for the duration of the lesson. After the lesson is over, you will return students to the Jamboard to complete the final column relating to what they learned during the lesson. On another note, while you do each of these protocols of the strategy, you can do a think, pair, and share or a wide range of other cooperative learning strategies. 

See, Think, Wonder

Another strategy to activate prior knowledge and develop conceptual frameworks is the see, think, and wonder strategy. To begin, present students with multimedia and have students observe and analyze what’s happening. Ask students to first think and process what’s happening and then describe what they are seeing. After writing down what they see, they are then asked to think again and write down any connections they have towards what they’ve observed. Finally, students are asked to write down what they further wonder about what they have observed and discussed. Throughout each of these sequences, students can discuss what they write with pairs, groups, or even the entire class. It’s up to you as to how long you want to spend on the strategy and each stage of it. 

Reading Comprehension Strategies

Above is the SWBST Chart, which can be used by a group or pair of students to complete as they read a story or article. Students can add images, text boxes, and sticky notes as they read the story to diagnose its major elements. You can scaffold this chart if you are doing guided reading, or you can have students jigsaw the story if you want them to read it in parts. Ultimately, it depends on what you would like to do and how you want to sequence using the strategy and SWBST chart for the reading. 

The next strategy relates to brainstorming about a story or article students are reading. Each corner represents a different question relating to who, what how, where, when, and why. Students can place everything that they remember about the text through their annotations and paraphrases, which can then be dumped. This can be done individually or within pairs, groups, or the entire class for a mass brainstorming session to occur. Overall, these braindumps can help students see a variety of different perspectives and can be utilized to even predict what the text could be about if it’s not being entirely read in one lesson. 

Another strategy can involve breakdown the various elements of the story or text by having students first review the main key details of the story. Then, in this same exercise, have them identify the main idea and then write a summary of the text. A curveball you can throw to students is to write the summary of the text within a word count range, which can help them work on their summarization skills. 

Combining Multiple Reading Comprehension Jamboards

If you would like to divide up students into groups and pairs and have them utilize various strategies and graphic organizers to complete regarding the text they are reading, you certainly can do it with Jamboard. Recall, you can have multiple Jams within a Jamboard (multiple slides) where various groups of students can work together. This creates opportunities for you to differentiate among groups or jigsaw the task as alluded to earlier. 

An activity that gives students the opportunity to review multiple Jamboards created by various groups is called a Digital Gallery Walk. Students from the other Jams on the Jamboard can review the other pairs or group’s work they did for the reading comprehension activity. This can then help be utilized to propel a discussion and make connections in their comprehension. 

Summarization and Reflection Protocols

At the end of the lesson, we want our students to summarize and reflect on their learning. The strategy and protocol of “I Used to Think” and “Now I Think” provides students the opportunity to reflect and also summarize their learning. To begin, you can ask students to think about and then write down what they used to think about what they learned. Then, you can have your students discuss in pairs the bullet points they’ve written. Following this phase, you then ask students to summarize what they think about the topic now, which can also include a short pair or group discussion after students write down their thoughts to share with others in a group or to the entire class. 

Concept Mapping

Concept mapping is a strategy you can implement when you want your students to make connections related to the content they are learning. From brainstorming to summarizing key relationships of the content and skills being discussed, concept mapping can be done individually and then within pairs or small groups, which can be followed up by a whole-class discussion. Overall, concept maps can be saved and placed onto Canvas or printed out to be placed around the classroom for students to view. This can be a helpful study tool for students. 

Conclusion – These Examples Are the Tip of the Iceberg

There are many strategies we can incorporate into Google Jamboard that can further amplify student learning. Eduprotocols, cooperative learning, and thinking routines are all types of instructional strategies that can be integrated into Google Jamboard, Google Slides, Pear Deck, and Nearpod. They are all part of the interactive slide family. Additionally, they can all be utilized for formative assessment to an extent, which can help you determine where your students are at relating to what you are covering at that point in time in your class. Take a look at the templates below as well as the strategies discussed here to see how you can begin to experiment with your students in your classroom.

Templates and More

Here’s a video going through how to use Google Jamboard. Then, take a look at the Ultimate Google Jamboard Collection thanks to TCEA. This Jamboard Template collection provides you with over 1200 templates for you to make a copy of and use for your classroom instruction. 

Jamboard Templates by Matt Miller

Published by Matthew Rhoads, Ed.D.

Innovator, EdTech Trainer and Leader, University Lecturer & Teacher Candidate Supervisor, Consultant, Author, and Podcaster

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