Monday, 15 February 2016

A better bright future - seeing the light at bett2016

I'll start by saying I'm sorry for the tardy blogging folks! But in all fairness this terms seems to be busier than I could ever have imagined.

Well I'm back from the bett show 2016 and what a show it was! If your an ICT leader at your school then I highly recommend it. Crammed full of stalls, lectures and endless amounts of new hardware and software it is literally a dream. All the newest gadgets and educational masterpieces are there to play with and dream about in your school. Whilst I was wide eyed and wandering I found myself inspired and thinking; if this is the future for education then it's incredibly exciting. Regardless of your struggles or money constraints it's well worth a look. I even won a new microbit!!!! Who said tweeting never got you anywhere!

What I learnt

As a fledgling ICT co-ordinator I was there to "figure it out" so to speak. The government have thrown us all a hail mary with the new computing curriculum so lucky me I get to figure it out! If the predictions are right 50% of all jobs will exist in the computing sphere by 2050. To be honest I think it will be much greater. I know area is woefully behind in bringing a coherent computing curriculum into practise and worst still internationally England as whole is a laughable tech player. Nevertheless, always the optimist there is interesting things to get your hands on. 

Raspberry Pi - Now I know! Come on! I'm behind! It came out ages ago! Yes but the newest version is brilliant. So much so I bought it straight after the show. The most expensive version comes in at £50. For the uninitiated such as myself it is a simple bare circuit board computer. The programming possibilities are endless. The cheapest version is £4 but you have limited wifi compact but still. Now the newest version comes preloaded with minecraft and scratch. Don't worry it has a familiar feel to the operating system. Draw backs for schools however are that you need mice, keyboards and a screen with hdmi socket. There are thousands of attachments and things you can programme it to do. I saw whack a mole games, cranes and mechanical devices all attached.

Microbit - I WON ONE! I can't wait for this little baby to come in the post! Another bare computer. I have to confess I don't know how much it costs. But it is made by the abc and you can programme it online to do all sorts of amazing things to display watches to cranes and bullies. Good news is I think it will be cheap and best of all it will work with current laptops that schools have. Bummer is that it appears there is some kind of delay... :(

Below are some of the highlights....