Categories : Weekly Blog
TeacherGaming attended both the English BETT and American FETC education conferences last month, real playgrounds for edtech and teachers alike! Both were great experiences, and we got to meet hundreds of educators interested in what we have to offer. Getting a glimpse at the hottest new educational innovations was another highlight of these trips.
Read on for a quick overview of our time at these events:
A good time? You BETT!
We spent nearly all our time working in our own small booth in BETT, but a few moments of idleness allowed me to walk around, checking out the latest and greatest in today’s education technology. This year’s hottest new technology is by far and large virtual and augmented reality, featured at multiple booths by several different companies. Robotics kits seem to be trendy at the moment, too!
Our own booth, which we shared with Cuppla, saw hundreds of interested people throughout the four days of BETT. The majority of visitors were teachers looking for classroom solutions and simply checking out all of the event’s offerings. The few children that visited our booth were delightful guests: every single one was excited by the idea of bringing quality games to the classroom!
The most exciting games proved to be Universe Sandbox 2 and Kerbal Space Program. Children and adults alike were thrilled to see the Moon crash into the Earth in slow motion! This visually impressive spectacle worked as a great introduction to the simulator. After I showed educators the ability to zoom in on any celestial body and read up on its statistics, including mass, composition and climate, they were impressed with the game’s learning potential.
My colleague, TG’s Learning Analytics Developer Elina, had this to say about her BETT experience:
“I really enjoyed my first BETT. Teacher feedback was great and we got a closer look at the differences between schools all over the world - some of the educators and administrators we talked to were from the US, Korea and China. It was great to get to meet people who are using TeacherGaming Desk and finding it a useful tool in the classroom.”
Across the Atlantic: FETC
While me and my three colleagues attended BETT, two others went to FETC, including our CEO, Santeri Koivisto and COO, Mikael Uusi-Mäkelä. Mikael had this to say about his FETC experience:
“At FETC, we acted as the sponsors for the Game-Based Learning Pavilion. It brought together half a dozen companies working on games and education. We had a blast with our neighbors 3DBear, Classcraft and Wibbu, the team behind the language immersion game Ruby Rei.
The GBL pavilion plus the nearby poster session brought a lot of attention to using games in education. Over three days, we spoke with hundreds of teachers, some new and some familiar from our days with MinecraftEdu. It seems we got a warm response as close to 50 teachers signed up for a co-creation program with us to develop the next stage of game-based learning."
All in all, BETT and FETC were amazing experiences for us. It’s all too easy to keep on working in the solitude of your own classroom (or, as in our case, our small office!) and forget about all the great innovations that are out there. That’s essentially what events like these come down to - real opportunities to bring new learning tools to innovative educators.