App review by Christy Matte, Common Sense Education | Updated June 2021
Jamboard
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Jamboard

Versatile whiteboard with fun features integrates with Google Suite

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Learning rating
Community rating
Based on 2 reviews
Privacy rating
Not yet rated Expert evaluation by Common Sense
Grades
4–12
Subjects & Skills
Communication & Collaboration

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5 images

Pros: Students can pull files from Google Drive and collaborate with each other while using Google Meet.

Cons: Lacks ability to add media content such as music and videos.

Bottom Line: Great collaborative tool for groups, whether remote or in person.

Use Jamboard as you would any whiteboard app. Teachers with Jamboard hardware can demonstrate on the Jamboard whiteboards and share Jams with students for collaborative whole-class discussions. Classrooms without the hardware can still collaborate using the app. Students can work in groups, collaborating in real time with drawings, images, and text. They can use it as a presentation tool, too. The flexibility of the app and the integration with Google Drive make it a tool that groups can use throughout a project -- from brainstorming and planning to presentation.

Once you've assigned a project, have students begin to collaborate using Jamboard. Students can work together using Google Meet so that they can talk through ideas as they map them. You can check in on a group's progress by looking at their Jamboard, and since the version history is available on the web, you can look back at their progress over time.

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Jamboard puts a whiteboard on any tablet in a student's hand. Students or teachers can create Jams, share them, and collaborate on them synchronously. Collaborators can add images from their device or an in-app search, drawings, text, and stickers. Jams can be saved as image files or PDFs and can have multiple pages, like a slideshow. As you would expect, there are drawing and shape tools to accompany the importing features, but there's no way to add other forms of media, like videos and music. Using Google Meet, students can collaborate over video chat while using Jamboard. If you need to check out progress over time, you can use the web platform to check the version history.

Since Jamboard can be used many ways, it can enhance learning in a variety of situations and in different content areas. It's great for teacher-led lessons, collaborative class discussions, small-group projects and presentations, and individual planning and organization. This versatility, along with the ease of integration into the Google platform, makes this a tool that many Google educators will want to implement, and students will enjoy using. The adaptive tools for text, shapes, and drawings make this friendlier for kids who struggle with fine motor skills. Though it doesn't have a ton of bells and whistles -- and not being able to add video or music is a limitation -- the seamless integration with the Google universe gives it an edge when it comes to making common classroom activities a bit easier. 

Overall Rating

Engagement

Intuitive design makes using it easy, and options for collaboration make it fun. Stickers, images, and assistive drawing tools mean that kids don't need to be artists to be successful.

Pedagogy

Jamboard empowers students to share ideas and collaborate without competing to be heard. Changes happen instantaneously, so teachers can quickly give feedback. 

Support

It integrates easily with Google Drive, allowing students to add files to their Jams and save them to Drive. Short help articles cover all of the tools.


Common Sense reviewer
Christy Matte Educator

Community Rating

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Featured review by
Jamie K. , Other
Other
Fort Worth Independent School District
Fort Worth, United States
Great interactive whiteboard!
Overall this is a very nice addition to Google Workspace It is integrated into Google Meets now which makes it easier to access. It is a whiteboard at heart and is not revolutionary but does bring that classroom experience to the students virtually with the added benefit of being able to work on the board simultaneously. I found the tool useful to stimulate further discussion. The easy integration of images makes the tool more fun and engaging for students.
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