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Worthington Direct weighs in on the hottest topic in education- which is better, the classic chalkboard or modern whiteboards?

( (PRWEB) July 27, 2007 — Worthington Direct (http://www.worthingtondirect.com) a supplier of school, church and early childhood furniture for over 10 years has seen the trend in classroom writing surfaces shift from the classic chalkboard to the sleeker whiteboard. Whether old-school or new-school, Worthington Direct sells both quality chalkboards and whiteboards that are perfect teaching tools, each in their own "write".

In the past, it was common to pass along the school hallways at the end of a day and see teachers with white hands and dusty clothes. This wasn’t the era of the Dust Bowl, but the era when chalkboards took center stage in every classroom.

Technology and materials have advanced and teachers today have moved the majority of their daily lessons onto the modern dry-erase, or whiteboard. They are more common and less dusty, but some still argue the value of the classic chalkboard.

Chalkboards

Chalkboards have been a standard teaching tool in schools for years. Educators have maintained that the chalkboard is still an ample teaching device for students, commenting on how it seems to help with the student’s handwriting. Chalk seems to be easier to hold for younger students. Educators have found that students are not developmentally ready to grip with their thumb, index and middle fingers. Instead, holding writing tools with more of a fist can be easier for young learners, thus making chalk an easy writing tool.

While students are using chalk, it doesn’t slip once it’s on the chalkboard as a dry-erase marker would on a whiteboard’s smooth surface. The chalkboard is also ideal for students learning cursive handwriting. Best-Rite, a manufacturer of quality writing surfaces, make their porcelain steel chalkboards with a fine-tooth abrasive surface for easier writing with chalk. http://worthingtondirect.com/brands/bestrite.htm

Originally made of slate, most chalkboards today are made from porcelain enamel and can be manufactured in a variety of sizes, styles and colors. They can be mobile, mounted to walls or hand-held. The porcelain steel products sold by Worthington Direct are strong and very sturdy, and are guaranteed to last 50 years or more.

Maintenance is a simple process. The chalkboards and their trays can simply be wiped down with a damp cloth, which makes them look good and new. Chalk can easily be replaced and doesn’t dry out. The cost of chalk is also far less than the cost of replacing markers.

The chalkboard does have its share of disadvantages, as well. For one, the chalk, which is simply compressed dust, can bother some educators and students with allergies. With the growing use of technology in the classroom, dust can be especially damaging to expensive equipment like microscopes and laptops.

The chalkboard still has plenty of benefits today, despite the relatively recent advances of whiteboards. Many teachers are fighting to keep them in their classrooms because they think the chalkboards are such a great benefit for their students and the entire learning process.

Whiteboards

For the past 20 years, many schools have chosen to replace the familiar chalkboard with high-tech and advanced whiteboards. These particular whiteboards, whose surfaces are smooth, use dry-erase markers. Teachers and students like the option of using whiteboards because they don’t require chalk and there is no dust.

Whiteboards offer a clean, modern, businesslike look, making them more appealing than darker chalkboards. Some whiteboards manufactured by Best-Rite have pre-printed lines and lettering to help in certain classes, such as music and geometry. The popular Pale-Riter, available through Worthington Direct, includes a grid pattern embedded in the board surface that is visible to the user, but remains nearly invisible to an audience. http://worthingtondirect.com/school_furniture/dry_erase_boards/paleriter_grid_line_board_by_bestrite.htm

Like with the chalkboards, whiteboards are available with porcelain steel surface consisting of low-gloss magnetic steel surface laminated to a thick MDF substrate for extra strength and moisture resistance. Teachers often prefer the magnetic surface because it allows them to easily display other teaching aids, such as maps or color wheels, with the use of small magnets.

Marker ghosting is not a problem with the Best-Rite porcelain steel surface, which offers superior erasability. The reduced surface light distortion enhances visibility to provide optimum eye comfort. Worthington Direct sells the full line of quality boards made by Best-Rite. http://worthingtondirect.com/brands/bestrite.htm

One drawback of using whiteboards in classrooms is that they are slick, so students end up writing faster than their brains can think, making handwriting not as clear. Also, shading in an area on the whiteboard is difficult with the dry-erase marker as the felt-tip will begin to erase itself if over passed a couple of times.

Whiteboards far outnumber chalkboards in classrooms today, but for many there is nothing better than dusting out those old erasers.

Worthington Direct offers Best-Rite products such as:

Deluxe Porcelain Steel Marker Boards:
http://worthingtondirect.com/school_furniture/dry_erase_boards/half_inch_deluxe_porcelain_steel_marker_board_by_best_rite.htm

Porcelain Steel Magnetic Chalkboards:
http://worthingtondirect.com/school_furniture/dry_erase_boards/porcelain_steel_chalkboard_by_bestrite.htm Vinyl Tack Boards:

http://worthingtondirect.com/school_furniture/dry_erase_boards/vinyl_tackboard_by_bestrite.htm

Reversible Freestanding Boards:
http://worthingtondirect.com/school_furniture/dry_erase_boards/deluxe_reversible_board_by_bestrite.htm Easel on Wheels:

http://worthingtondirect.com/school_furniture/av_equipment/easel_on_wheels_by_bestrite.htm About Worthington Direct: After spending over 10 years in the school supply, church and equipment industry, Worthington Direct (http://www.worthingtondirect.com) knows what is important – selection, service, price and timing.

Our goal is to make your purchasing job easier. With competitive pricing, knowledgeable sales associates, and "In Stock" products for quick, efficient shipping, Worthington Direct is committed to be your furniture resource. Schools and churches look to Worthington Direct for competitive pricing for school furniture, church furniture, preschool furniture, early childhood furniture, library furniture, desks, wholesale furniture, computer furniture, classroom furniture, chalkboards, office furniture, room dividers, storage cabinets, easels, display cases, cafeteria tables, activity tables, classroom desks, computer tables, desk chairs, lecterns, literature racks, office desks and risers among its large stock.

For more information contact Wren Ovard at 800-599-6636.

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