Let's talk here about the basic board operation.

The features most everyone uses are:

The projected image--for seeing the computer desktop, for using and displaying the Internet, and for using and displaying software programs. It is possible to take advantage of many features that people love about smartboards, without owning a smartboard. It is the projected image that allows us the greatest latitude in our instruction.

Writing on the images--to show students how to edit, to emphasize parts of a webpage, to teach with a software package. (This can also be done with only a projector by projecting onto a whiteboard and then using the regular markers--great for DOL or math overheads.) This is an awesome feature when looking at art online--the ability to draw onto the artwork to highlight a shape, or feature, cannot be understated.

Teaching computer applications--again, can easily be done with a projector alone, but ahh, what a treat to demonstrate where to go and how to do it with a simple point and tap.

Dragging and moving objects with your finger--this is when the smartboard software (and a few other applications like Inspiration) turn using a smartboard into an instructional artwork. When you begin to use and create materials for the board through the notebook software, you will see the board (and your students) come to life. When your students are allowed to do the dragging, too, the potential grows exponentially.