Interactive Whiteboard FAQs

Forget chalkboards or even whiteboards. Interactive whiteboards are here to stay as part of classroom technology in our schools, college, and universities. Not only do they serve as displays for information and videos, but they also let teachers and instructors send notes and lessons to mobile devices, interact with photos and videos, and allow students to interact with lessons. 

Interactive whiteboards are perfect for visual, auditory, and kinesthetic learners. As such, look at our answers to frequently asked questions about interactive whiteboards in today’s blog.

Related Post: Why Classroom Technology in Cincinnati, OH, Is More Important Than Ever

What is an interactive whiteboard?

This classroom technology allows people to input information directly or through remote devices. It generally sits at the front of the classroom where all students can see it. 

What does an interactive whiteboard do?

Also known as a smartboard or electronic whiteboard, it can display images on a classroom board for everyone to see using a digital projector. Teachers and students can manipulate images shown on the screen, such as making them larger, smaller, or inverted by using a finger, stylus, or specially designed tool. 

Teachers and instructors can put lessons on the screen from a laptop, desktop, or mobile device. Then, they can move through the lesson in order while starting and stopping the instruction when needed to explain concepts or answer questions.

What is the difference between an interactive whiteboard and a smartboard?

A smart board is a computer screen projected onto a larger screen for everyone in the room to view. An interactive whiteboard is a large computer screen that allows people to move visuals and information around through touch or devices. Think of an interactive whiteboard as a digital chalkboard or a traditional whiteboard using markers.

Why does my classroom need an interactive whiteboard?

An interactive whiteboard offers a way for students to learn with the technology they’re already used to through the whiteboard’s technology that sends lessons to their laptops, mobile devices, or tablets. This allows students to take assignments home while providing a way for teachers to customize lessons for each individual student. 

How does an interactive whiteboard help students?

This classroom technology helps pupils in several ways, such as:

  • Supporting existing curricula with video, audio, and computer software to go along with traditional texts.
  • Customization for each student. For example, the teacher has a lesson about animals. Each student can choose an animal to do a report based on their favorite type of animal, from lions, tigers, and bears to fish, turtles, and frogs.
  • Accountability because teachers can monitor student performance by interacting with assignments, taking assessments, and reading text. This accountability goes up the food chain with test scores and reporting to the district.
  • Favors individuals who need one-on-one assistance in a communal setting. Interactive whiteboards provide a way for students to give one-on-one assistance to students while maintaining the communal aspect of learning.

Related Post: 5 Ways Classroom Technology Enhances Your Students’ Learning

Who can install interactive whiteboards and classroom technology in my school?

American Sound, with offices in Cincinnati, Louisville, Phoenix, and Indianapolis, can install classroom technology and interactive whiteboards at your school, district, lecture hall, or campus. 

Call (859) 261-9024 for more information on what our team can do for you.

Types of Wireless Portable Microphones for Classroom Voice Reinforcement

Classroom voice reinforcement can be a vital part of your classroom for many reasons. Your teachers can be heard over the din of the classroom. It can save their voices, particularly during the winter months when illnesses and sore throats are prevalent. Voice reinforcement can also improve learning within hybrid or in-person environments. 

Our professional sound system installers discuss the types of wireless portable microphones you might see on a classroom voice reinforcement system. When we say wireless, we’re talking about how they wirelessly connect to speakers throughout your classroom.

Lapel Microphones

When you think of wireless portable microphones, lapel microphones are probably the first thing you think about. They attach to a pocket on either side of a shirt or along the row of buttons somewhere in the middle of a button-down shirt. Position this type of wireless portable microphone about 6 to 8 inches below your neck for optimal effectiveness. The microphone plugs into a portable, battery-powered unit that transmits the signal to the speakers.

Over-the-Ear Microphones

Popular because of how lightweight and secure they are, over-the-ear microphones have a small yet comfortable plastic casing that fits behind your ear while a narrow wire holds a small microphone near your mouth. Much like a lapel microphone, it connects to a battery-powered unit about the size of a deck of cards. This unit transmits signals to the speakers in the classroom.

USB Microphones

Somewhat newer to the classroom voice reinforcement technology lineup, USB microphones are about the same size as two D-batteries placed back-to-back. Clip a USB microphone to your lapel or use a lanyard to hang it against your shirt like you would an ID badge or name tag. USB microphones don’t need a separate unit because the wireless transmitter is in the same equipment as the microphone itself rather than being connected to a separate unit for classroom voice reinforcement.

Select a Microphone to Fit Your Needs

These are the three main kinds of wireless portable microphones you’ll find with a classroom voice reinforcement system. While they each serve the same basic purpose, it’s important to select one that fits your needs and preferences. Wireless portable microphones are one of the best solutions for a classroom because they let the teacher maintain control over the volume versus a microphone on the table or in the ceiling where students’ voices might be heard.

Classroom Voice Reinforcement for Your School

Interested in classroom voice reinforcement for your school? 

Contact American Sound for more information, or call (859) 261-9024 in Cincinnati or (502) 694-3339 in Louisville. 

We’ll discuss your needs and options with you for a great classroom voice reinforcement system.

Hybrid Teaching Technology FAQs

American Sound helps teachers have more effective classroom settings and outcomes with classroom sound reinforcement systems as well as interactive classroom technology that helps your students engage with their lessons.

Hybrid teaching has made huge strides and headlines since the COVID-19 pandemic changed our modern world and how teachers handle their lesson plans and teaching methods.

Today, our team answers frequently asked questions about hybrid teaching technology.

What hybrid teaching technology does each classroom need?

Hybrid teaching involves in-person and remote learning. As such, you must set up your classroom for both types of teaching for maximum effectiveness.

  1. Computers. The teacher needs a desktop computer to manage everything effectively, while students should have laptops or tablets so they can follow along in their lessons.
  2. Video technology. In addition to cameras, there are devices called visualizers that allow teachers to show intricate details by magnifying a small object, such as a leaf, document, insect, image, or chart, and displaying the object on a screen in the classroom or on a student’s computer monitor. If you walk around as you teach, auto-tracking cameras are vital to this teaching model.
  3. A wearable microphone. A teacher should wear a portable microphone so students can hear every part of the lesson.
  4. Speakers. The microphone should connect to speakers in the classroom but also the remote learners. Everyone should be able to hear the teacher.
  5. Interactive displays in the classroom allow you to change what’s on the screen and send what’s on the display to students’ computers at home.
  6. Interactive control boxes let teachers to share screens through multiple sources, allowing students with computers to see the same information.
  7. Charging carts and cabinets. For in-classroom learners, you need a secure place to charge laptops and tablets. A cabinet or cart specifically designed for this purpose keeps everything safe and secure.

How is hybrid teaching technology set up?

Every classroom is different, and a professional sound system installation company can help you with your hybrid teaching technology setup. The exact configuration depends on the technology tools you have on hand, the size of the physical classroom, the shape of the room, and how many students you have.

Here is a basic way to set up your classroom tech:

  1. Install cameras so remote and in-person learners can see all materials on the board and in the classroom, and so they can see the teacher when needed.
  2. Arrange the cameras around the communication and collaborative technology tools, such as whiteboards and visualizers.
  3. Keep your physical classroom space flexible and moveable, depending on classroom activities. While a traditional setup can work for some lessons, when you teach other lessons, it might be more appropriate to have a circular arrangement where in-person learners form a circle around the teacher.

Why should my school invest in hybrid teaching technology?

Several good reasons to invest in this technology include:

  1. Fostering every kind of learning style: audial, visual, and hands-on.
  2. Offers collaborative learning.
  3. Teaches children how to use technology at a young age, which will help them later in life.
  4. Professional equipment works together to bring about the best learning outcomes.
  5. State-of-the-art equipment makes teaching easier and more effective.
  6. Modern equipment is upgradeable.
  7. New, professional equipment lasts for several years, allowing your school system to get the most out of your investment.

Who should I contact about professional hybrid teaching technology?

Contact American Sound for more information, or call (859) 261-9024 in Cincinnati or (502) 694-3339 in Louisville. 

We’ll discuss your needs and options with you.

What Microphone Types Are Available for Hybrid Classrooms?

When choosing a microphone for hybrid classrooms, teachers have to consider a variety of factors, such as cost, convenience, comfort, and most importantly, audio quality. To help you sift through the options, here are some details about the different types of microphones available for teachers in today’s blog from American Sound.

Related Post: Three Main Considerations for Choosing a Classroom Sound Reinforcement System

1. Wearable microphones

Wearable, hands-free presenter mics are ideal for live or pre-recorded lectures. They feature clip-on mics so instructors can have their hands free while teaching and also move around the classroom easily. 

Generally speaking, there are two types of wearable mics:

  • Battery-operated wearable mics. These types of microphones require teachers to carry a battery pack while they navigate around the classroom. They also have to recharge the batteries every so often. 
  • Cordless battery-free wearable mics. If instructors prefer a wire-free and battery-free option, many wearable mics can deliver on those promises. These types of wearable mics usually include a USB base station and charger that has a built-in receiver. They typically provide a range of 65 feet or more, ensuring clear communication as the instructor moves around the classroom.

2. Speakerphone microphones

Speakerphone mics are another great option for instructors who are teaching primarily online. A portable speakerphone is ideal for interactive hybrid classrooms and can help ensure a collaborative experience. Some speakerphones also utilize a special sound technology that eliminates background noise outside a specific range. This is a great solution to ensure that students can hear the instructor’s voice over any other distracting classroom sounds like papers rustling or side conversations.

3. Wireless portable microphones for students

Wireless portable microphones improve remote learning by encouraging student discussion and interaction in hybrid classrooms. Instead of struggling through the clunky logistics of muting and unmuting speakers via your video conferencing platform, classroom participants can pass around a wireless portable microphone to easily discuss topics and contribute to the conversation. Many of these portable microphones easily integrate with Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and other video teaching platforms for a smooth and superior hybrid teaching experience.

4. Plug-and-play microphones

There are many different brands and types of plug-and-play microphones available, but essentially, they just plug directly into your laptop via USB and instantly provide clear and accurate audio recordings (with no additional driver installation). Many of these microphones also come with an adjustable desktop stand so instructors can position the microphone as needed. Compatibility varies depending on the brand, but many plug-and-play mics are compatible with Mac OS, Windows, tablets, and other mobile devices, which make them very practical for travel and use in the classroom or at home.

Related Post: How an Investment in Classroom Sound Reinforcement Pays Off in the Long Run

Need Equipment Installation for Hybrid Classrooms?

Contact American Sound for help. We offer professional installation of audio equipment for hybrid classrooms to ensure that instructors and students have the best learning environment available during these challenging times. Call (859) 261-9024 today for more details.

Advice for Using Microphones for Hybrid Teaching as Part of Classroom Technology

Three Main Considerations for Choosing a Classroom Sound Reinforcement System

A classroom sound reinforcement system helps save your teachers’ voices, reduces the spread of germs, and enhances learning in your school. You’ll need to select the right system based on classroom size, acoustics, range, and the type of instruction. 

But there are other considerations to think about as well. Today’s blog from American Sound discusses three things to keep in mind when investing in a classroom sound reinforcement system.

Related Post: How to Make Classroom Sound Reinforcement Cool for Elementary Kids

1. Does it have enough power for everyone to hear the teacher?

The most important component of classroom sound reinforcement systems is the speaker set up. You’ll need speakers that can reach everyone in the classroom. Plus, technicians have to optimize the system to prevent feedback from the microphone, balance the decibel levels throughout the room, and eliminate echoes in the room.

2. How well does it reproduce sound?

Students must be able to hear the teacher intelligibly at all times. Not only does this foster learning, but it can help save a teacher’s voice. Being able to hear the teacher also comes in handy for emergency drills, weather emergencies, and other class announcements. 

The connections among the microphone and speakers need to be robust. Broken connections, lack of power to the microphone, and interruptions in the transmission all lead to lower volume and time spent troubleshooting instead of teaching. The team at American Sound will show you how to use the classroom sound reinforcement system and ensure the equipment operates properly.

3. Is the classroom sound reinforcement system easy to set up and move around?

You may choose to alter your classroom configuration from time to time to foster better learning. There might be instances where a classroom undergoes a renovation or the class size changes. 

All of these instances might present a situation where you want to move the speakers for the classroom sound reinforcement system. We’ll demonstrate how to do this easily and effectively for optimal sound in your classroom.

Related Post: How an Investment in Classroom Sound Reinforcement Pays Off in the Long Run

Classroom Sound Reinforcement by American Sound

Do your teachers need a little extra help in their classrooms? Contact American Sound or call (859) 261-9024 to learn more about the classroom sound reinforcement systems we install.

Choosing the Right Classroom Sound Reinforcement System

Your school system may benefit from classroom sound reinforcement, particularly during the COVID-19 pandemic. Schools must adapt to new learning environments brought about by the spread of this infectious disease. Today’s blog from American Sound talks about choosing the right classroom sound reinforcement technology for your building or system.

Related Post: 5 Reasons Your Teachers Need Classroom Sound Reinforcement

Classroom Size

The classroom’s size is probably the most important factor in selecting the right classroom sound reinforcement system. There’s the physical classroom size: Is it a small room? Is it half of a gymnasium? Then there’s how many children are in the room. A small room with 30 children may need the same type of system as a larger room with 10 students. American Sound can determine the right type of classroom sound reinforcement for each individual room in your building.


Can the elements of your classroom sound reinforcement be moved around the room easily? For example, a wireless microphone is a must. Do you prefer a ceiling-mounted speaker or one with a portable speaker the teacher can carry? Ceiling-mounted speakers pack a greater sound punch compared to portable models, but those won’t work if the teacher needs to head outside for recess.


What’s the range of the system? Range includes the sensitivity of the microphone, such as how close or far away the microphone is from the teacher’s mouth. The range for classroom sound reinforcement technology also includes how far away someone can hear noises coming from the speaker. You want everyone in the room to hear what’s coming from the system, but not necessarily those in the hallway walking past the room.

Type of Instruction

A teacher lecturing on ordinary topics, such as math, science, or writing, needs a different classroom sound reinforcement system compared to a teacher working with musical instruments or singing. Those types of classrooms have different configurations and acoustics requirements, so you’ll need slightly different configurations for your sound systems.

Related Post: Why Classroom Technology in Cincinnati OH Is More Important Than Ever

Classroom Technology by American Sound

The pros at American Sound are experts in classroom sound reinforcement. We’d be happy to demonstrate how these systems work, and then we’ll discuss your options. Get in touch with American Sound or call (859) 261-9024 for more information on how we can help your school system, teachers, and students.

How to Make Classroom Sound Reinforcement Cool for Elementary Kids

Teachers need all the help they can get as they adapt to new learning models in the classroom due to the COVID-19 pandemic. While masks and social distancing make it harder to deliver lessons, there are ways around these barriers to education.

Enter classroom sound reinforcement systems. They pipe sound through a microphone into an overhead speaker so everyone can hear. These systems save your teachers’ voices and allow them to be heard in all corners of the classroom. Today’s blog from American Sound discusses how to make classroom sound reinforcement cool for elementary school kids.

Related Post: 5 Ways Classroom Technology Enhances Your Students’ Learning

Remember That Kids Love Technology

One thing to remember is that kids love technology. The sooner young children learn how to use computers and smartphones, the more adept they’ll be at using new technology when they’re older. Kindergarteners will undoubtedly ask repeated questions about the microphone and where the teacher’s voice is coming from with regard to the classroom sound reinforcement technology. Kids are understandably curious, and they want to know about the cool gadget their teacher is using.

Talk About the System

Rather than wait and talk about the classroom sound reinforcement when you have a formal lesson, talk about the system when kids ask about it. Say how this helps everyone, and that kids should pay attention to whoever speaks through the microphone. Consider letting some pupils speak through the mic so they can hear their own voices. Children learn best when they can relate to the lesson, so making it about them is a great way to help them feel at ease with the classroom reinforcement technology. 

Make It a Teachable Item

Turn the classroom sound reinforcement technology into a formal lesson. Discuss how sound travels, the technology behind microphones and speakers, turning sound into electrical signals, and how radio waves connect the microphone to the speakers. Of course, each lesson should be age-appropriate. 

Discuss the Importance of Technology

Discuss how important technology is in the lives of everyone. Surely, your students can relate to talking to their parents through a smartphone. Talk about how the same type of technology applies to your classroom sound reinforcement system. Expand the teachable moment to talk about how communication, such as talking and listening, is important for everyone.

Experiment With It

Experiment with classroom sound reinforcement. Have your students talk into the microphone. Does the sound coming out of the speaker get louder as you get closer to it and then softer as you move away from it? What happens when someone whispers into the microphone? What happens if someone shouts?

Related Post: 5 Reasons Your Teachers Need Classroom Sound Reinforcement

Classroom Technology & American Sound

Classroom sound reinforcement is an essential part of an overall classroom technology platform, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. These types of systems can help your students and teachers stay healthier while achieving effective outcomes.  Contact American Sound or call (859) 261-9024 for more information on what we can do for your school.

How to Combine Hybrid Learning and Classroom Sound Reinforcement Technology

Many school districts across the country are turning to a hybrid learning model. Teachers combine in-class learning with remote learning as students connect from home using laptops or mobile devices. 

When combined with internet connectivity, classroom sound reinforcement can help teachers reach the most students in the most effective ways. Today’s blog from American Sound explains how to combine hybrid learning and classroom sound reinforcement.

Related Post: 5 Reasons Your Teachers Need Classroom Sound Reinforcement

Hearing the Teacher’s Voice

One key to learning, both in class and at home, is hearing the teacher’s voice. A teacher needs to make sure every student can hear his or her lessons, whether 30 kids are in the room or just five. 

Classroom sound reinforcement alleviates the strain on the teacher’s voice through the mask while making sure their voice comes through loud and clear in the speaker system. But how do you set up the system to make sure students at home can hear, too?

Setting Up Microphones

Wireless microphones represent the best setup for hybrid learning and classroom sound reinforcement. Make sure your wireless microphone technology connects to the room’s speakers and the computer that transmits the lessons to your students. 

State-of-the-art wireless microphones use a USB drive that plugs into the laptop to serve as a direct audio connection. That prevents feedback from the overhead speaker from creating a loop of squeals and static. Plus, that direct audio link makes it easier for students to hear a teacher’s unfiltered voice compared to one that goes through the teacher’s microphone, a speaker, the computer’s microphone, and then the student’s speakers. 

Dual Receivers

To accomplish effective hybrid and in-room learning with classroom sound reinforcement, you’ll need a wireless microphone system with dual receivers that connect directly to computers and speakers at the same time. 

Other considerations include:

  • Does the classroom sound reinforcement reach the entire room?
  • Is the system user-friendly?
  • Can it reproduce sound so everyone can understand the teacher clearly?

Related Post: Why Classroom Technology in Cincinnati OH Is More Important Than Ever

Classroom Technology by American Sound

The pros at American Sound are experts in classroom sound reinforcement. Talk to us about scheduling a consultation or demonstration of how these systems work. We’d be happy to meet with you to discuss options. Contact American Sound or call (859) 261-9024 for more information on what we can do for your school system, teachers, and students.

3 Main Elements of a Classroom Sound Reinforcement System

Classroom sound reinforcement amplifies a teacher’s voice into a noisy classroom filled with kids. The overall goal is for the teacher to be heard more clearly, especially if the teacher has to wear a mask as mandated by health officials. In today’s blog from American Sound, we describe the three main components of a classroom sound reinforcement system.

Related Post: 5 Ways Classroom Technology Enhances Your Students’ Learning

1. Microphone

The teacher wears a microphone, usually as a lightweight appliance around the neck. Even though they are lightweight, these microphones are heavy-duty, withstanding hours of continuous use. Inside the microphone is a lithium-ion battery that recharges after a day of teaching. Handy controls allow the teacher to increase or decrease the volume and turn the unit on or off.

The idea here is to have a hands-free model that doesn’t interfere with the teacher’s normal movements. Lapel microphones with wires may get caught on clothing or on students. Headset microphones may not work well because it could interfere with a teacher’s mask.

2. Video or Interactive Screen

For larger classrooms, a video screen or interactive screen projects an image of the teacher on a wall or even to tablet computers in the hands of students. The camera is generally mounted high on a wall or the ceiling so it stays out of reach of curious students.

3. Ceiling-Mounted Speakers

The beauty of classroom sound reinforcement comes from the state-of-the-art speaker system. Ceiling-mounted speakers allow sound to travel in all directions to all corners of the room, which is much more effective than speakers at the front of the room projecting outward. Even better, ceiling mounts keep the speakers away from curious students. 

We might install one overhead speaker for smaller rooms or multiple speakers in larger classrooms for optimal performance. The staff at American Sound will come to your school, assess the needs of each individual room, and test the classroom sound reinforcement technology before the teacher uses it in a learning environment.

Related Post: Why Classroom Technology in Cincinnati OH Is More Important Than Ever

Classroom Sound Reinforcement by American Sound

Classroom sound reinforcement represents an essential part of an overall classroom technology platform, especially during the COVID-19 pandemic. Contact American Sound or call (859) 261-9024 for more information on what we can do for your school.