The Bett 2019 Blog: Day 1

Upon entering The Excel, it becomes clear why Bett Show veterans recommend you plan your day carefully: it takes ten minutes to walk from one end of the hall to the other, with countless curiosities to catch your attention along the way. From dancing robots to discussions with industry leaders, it truly is an action-packed, immersive event for all involved in education.

So what made day 1 special for us?

 

Firstly, we are thrilled to announce our sister platform, Edtech Impact, went live on Wednesday morning. Check it out and let us know what you think!

It was wonderful to see so many suppliers who have worked with us at Innovate My School events. Twinkl presented their truly awesome augmented reality educational games and ever growing library of interactive objects, including cars, aardvarks, and a specially requested unicorn! We dropped in to see Speed Date favourites, CPOMS, with their safeguarding solution, and EdLounge, who have recently launched DO MY CPD.

We caught up with Ranim Nahhas whose product, Human Heroes, was recently mentioned in the Edtech Impact newsletter for its celebrity guest featured in the first installment of the digital history series. In “Einstein on Time” Stephen Fry lends his voice to Einstein; Ranim discussed the amount of hard work that went into the project, and was kind enough to show us an exclusive photo of Stephen recording in the studio.

There was particular focus on Microsoft as they launched their budget Lenovo 300e laptop and new Classroom Pen specifically designed around the feedback from their education customers. Featuring increased durability and fantastic new solutions, students can use the 300e to simultaneously type and record lessons on the other side of the screen. They told us at the after hours reception that students frequently forgot or lost their stylus pens, so the 300e was designed to withstand the use of a standard classroom pencil on its surface screen! Forgetting your pen is no longer an excuse to avoid the work!

ms reception

We also had the opportunity to interview Chris Rothwell, Director of Education at Microsoft, about their latest research investigating the technical readiness of students leaving school in the UK - we will release the full article around this exclusive interview at a later date.

On our travels we caught sight of a weather balloon with a camera attached to it - we just had to find out more! We were given a complete tour of Pi-Top’s stand as they launch Pi-Top 4, which could measure air quality, control a robot, and even create optimal environments for plants to grow! Stuart Swann explained how all of these mind-blowing examples could easily be produced in the classroom to “inspire a generation of makers”.

pi robot

As we were soaking in all the information, we were also sharing our own ideas as Michael Forshaw led the Edtech Impact Surgery in the Peer to Peer lounge, sharing with teachers how they can conduct a "DIY" in-house edtech evaluation. Attendees were truly engaged and the Surgery was apparently the most popular Peer to Peer session of the day!

Between the flashy stands and awe-inspiring tech innovations, what was the key takeaway message today? Teachers believe technology can innovate the way they work, but many don’t have the information or confidence to use it to its maximum potential. Stay tuned as we check in for day 2 to see how this message develops with the next wave of talks, showcases, and conversations.

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