It wasn’t until 1800, when James Pillians, a geography teacher in Scotland, wanted to show large maps to his students, that the blackboard was born. Pillians attached the smaller pieces of slate boards that his students used and hung them in front of the class. With this small change the student could be entirely focused on the teacher, who now had a tool with endless possibilities.
By the mid-19th century, blackboards were being manufactured and distributed throughout the United States. It was a wooden board with a thick coat of black paint composed of porcelain. In the 20th century the modern-day greenboards or chalkboards were used. Slowly, green replaced black as it cut down on glare and was said to bring a more pleasing atmosphere to the classroom.
In modern times blackboards and chalkboards seem to be relics of the past, as most schools have opted for the new whiteboards. Recently, with the new wave of technology the smartboard has become the up and coming device for teachers. But, no matter how many changes the blackboard goes through, one thing is for sure, the need for a central large board that teachers can use to explain their lessons and that students focus their attention on is here to stay.