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Live hand drawn content – Collaborate


The goal of this recipe is to enable staff to easily draw during a live collaborate session.


This will cover how to use a second device (tablet or phone) during a Collaborate session. It doesn’t cover how to use Collaborate. 


  • A collaborate session
  • A main device (laptop or PC)
  • A secondary device (tablet or phone)
  • (optional) – pen / paper. 
  • (optional) – a way of supporting your phone. A mini light box with a hole in the top can work well.


  1. Find the guest link for your session – you can’t simply login into Collaborate twice – it will tell you you’re already logged in.
  2. Start the session on the main computer – I’d do it a few minutes before you expect the students.
  3. Enter the guest link in a browser on the second device. You’ll need to ensure this device is muted – the easiest way to do that is simply to disallow the microphone from accessing the session. You’ll see that it warns you you won’t hear any audio. If you can’t do that, then set the volume as low as you can, and ideally, attach a headset to it. 
  4. From your main computer, promote your second user to moderator.

Using the Whiteboard

If you intend to use the Whiteboard, you will want to disable participants usage of the whiteboard. This can be done either when you create the session, or just when you want to use the whiteboard. (It will stop students accidentally deleting what you’re doing!)

Start the whiteboard, on either device. You’ll be drawing on the tablet, so it’s easiest to have the right panel closed, to give you as much space as possible.

You can now draw on the tablet, and use the main computer for audio, to follow chat etc.

Using a camera

If you are using your phone, you may find it’s easier to use it for video than the whiteboard. Though my phone offered me the opportunity to use both forward and rear facing camera, it couldn’t mirror the rear facing camera, so text was reversed. I therefore had to use the forward-facing camera, which is a bit fiddlier.

Looking forward to seeing your solutions!

Remember, you can use Collaborate on your own if you’d like to prepare content in advance of a session – just remember to click record when you start!

Sharing a hand drawn image – using Collaborate and an iPod.
Updated on 03/01/2022

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