Initial thoughts on BETT #bett2011

I only spent about three hours at the exhibition at Bett. After that time my brain is full of ideas and I needed to get out of there. I think having Ofsted in school next week has reduced my capacity as well.

I saw dozens of stands; this post is the ideas that caught my eye as being worthy of further investigation. I will probably come back to them over the coming months.

EPICT – European Pedagogical ICT License (www.epict.info)

CPD about the pedagogy behind ICT. I think that there is a lot of training put into the technical side of using ICT in the classroom but there is not always sufficient thought put into why we are doing this using this particular ICT method. Just because we can do something does not mean we should. Looks like this might explore some of these issues and worthy of investigation. The thing that first caught my the module on E-Safety.

Edupics.org

Essentially google images for schools using high quality rights-cleared images. Great idea; unfortunately I can’t see myself ever subscribing for this as the same can be found using creative commons images on flickr. Particularly as it seems very expensive £125.00 for 200 pictures. In the time of squeezed budgets I can’t justify the cost.

Promethean

Saw the ActivBoard 500 Pro; this is a great interactive whiteboard that allows multi-touch input using both pen and finger. Would love one but is probably prohibitively pricey, did not even ask the price.

Mageon Projector Genius

A device that is essentially a device that change a normal projector into a budget interactive whiteboard. Consists of a receiver and a pen. Works like an interactive whiteboard but with a special pen and receiver. Can be retrofitted to existing installation. Looks like good value at £200. Only glitch is the website is all in chinese. I wonder if they do have a UK reseller?? http://www.magonchina.com/

Cambridge University Press

Very non-IT based; although they said that they will be releasing an online resource bank in the next year. However they have published some new books supporting IB Geography. They gave me a sample chapter from some of their upcoming books. I also purchased a copy of their new IB text for the core theme for £12.50 (normal price £25.00) as it was the last day of BETT. Review coming soon!

LUNS – Lancaster University Network Services www.luns.net.uk

They offer consultancy on the technical side of Moodle installation as well as hosting Moodle installations for schools who are setting up a moodle deployment. They can then transfer the deployment to a schools own server down the road. They also offer broadband but not something that I am personally interested in.

University of Cambridge International Assessments

Got some good information on the iGCSE that we are seriously considering implementing. The rep also gave me details on how to access past papers.

Capita – SIMS Learning Gateway

Had a play with the Learning Gateway which we may be implementing in school soon. More usefriendly than SIMS itself and allows remote web based access to Assessment Manager and Pupil Tracker.

ParentPay

As a teaching member of staff I have very little to do with ParentPay. However I do receive reports generated from ParentPay. The helpful staff at the Parent Pay stand showed me how the report can be printed in a more user friendly format. I can now go to school on Monday and share the information.

Will be posting a blog about last nights #tmbett2011 later today!

I also received about 15 free pens and various other bits and pieces! All in all a very useful morning!