BETT2010 and #TMBETT2010 … a review

Exciting times are ahead if teachers carrying on their excellent practice in the way I observed over the last couple of days.

Firstly, BETT itself had a couple of highs for me. If I wasn’t out supporting someone by watching their #tmtakeover talk then I was concentrating on the “little stands”, those hidden gems that are a bargain price and can make a big difference. I was really excited by a weather presenting program from Kudlian software that allowed you to create the weather maps, write a weather script and then present it using green screen, if you have it, or split screen if you don’t. A single license for this was in the region of £45 and a site license for a secondary school was only about £450ish. Very exciting as we dabble in this but it’s difficult and time consuming.

I was really interested in the TTS stand and the Easi-Speak Mic Pro. I’ve seen the Easi-Speak Mic in the past but felt it was too ‘primary school’ to use in a secondary context. It is light and bright yellow … all a little Fisher Price for my liking. The Pro version is silver, more weighty and has a more expensive feel. The quality is no different but the credibility for students is important. It’s only a little more expensive so I’ve ordered 10 to see how it goes in the classroom.

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TeachMeet Takeover was probably the most exciting aspect of the day. This was due to the excellent organisation by Tom Barrett and outstanding support from sponsors such as Scholastic, BrainPop, Adobe and many more. I think the exciting thing for me is the opportunity to affect a much wider audience than with a full TeachMeet which is a big commitment if you don’t know what it’s all about.

The TeachMeet in the evening was fantastic. The presenters were really interesting. Helen Myers talking about Second Life to learn languages, Oliver Quinlan talking about blogs for Year 4 and Ian Addison talking about Voki. Some of it may not be new to everyone in the room but it will be new to some people. We even managed to get some people signed up to Twitter in the break. A downside was the quality of the video using FlashMeeting for online participation. We had a new sponsor signed up late in the day from ConnectEd Education who provide video streaming solutions but unfortunately there were some problems with the Internet connection, ports and IP ranges and we couldn’t get it off the ground. This was a shame but a last minute idea so with more planning we could get it going next year. Thanks to @eyebeams for running a twitcam stream that was better apparently.

The TeachEat at Pizza Express was great as well and thanks to the sponsors, Promethean, Anderton Tiger and RM who covered all pizzas and drinks.

TeachMeet is a fantastic network but it’s still relatively small. We need to continue building our networks but also build connect our network to other networks to extend this excellent practice.

Don’t forget to report how you’ve used practice from #tmbett2010 and #tmtakeover to get your hands on one of 25 full Camtasia licences from TechSmith or an iPod from Promethean. Just email tmbett2010@gmail.com and tell us whose idea you used, how it went and even examples of work!

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