We are now into the 3rd day of the Learning Without Frontiers
conference at The Brewery, London. Chris, Shaun and I have had a fantastic time and so many interesting conversations it is hard to say where to start.
Firstly, we have to a massive thank you to Graham Brown-Martin
and the team who have allowed us to take part. In an off-hand comment about free stands he kindly not only offered EduGeek some tickets (and a discount for others) but he also asked Chris if he would like to have a stand at the conference to share the ideals of the community with others. So many people here have been impressed with EduGeek, but are surprised that, although they didn’t know more about us, they are eager to see how they can contribute and help.
Learning Without Frontiers is a slightly different conference to many that we have been to before. In previous years there have been the Handheld Learning Conference, Games-based Learning Conference and Digital Safety strands. These have been merged into a single conference in London, with others planned for USA and Ghana. It is all about the people that push the boundaries of things … getting them all together to share what goes on, how they do it, argue discuss the agenda in education and get things moving forward.
Many of the sessions from the conference have been filmed (many were streamed), and will be online on the conference site over the coming weeks. There will be plenty of notes from the various delegates around and about … we will try to collate as many of them together as over the coming week and hope you find them useful … remembering that these are the ideas that are reaching your schools and are getting them thinking about where they need to go next with technology.
Sunday saw The Sunday Service, the free day where delegates were encouraged to bring along their kids … and it was fantastic to see so many of them involved and leading sessions … and with people like Jason Bradbury and the Immersive Theatre group it is hard not to join in yourself. The evening saw another TeachMeet where you could see examples of technology being used in schools from blogging through to using the Nintendo DS, kids creating content and then sharing with other schools …
Monday and Tuesday were for paying delegates and with speakers like Karen Cater (Director of Educational Technology, US Dept of Education), Ed Vaizey MP (Minister for Culture, Communications and Creative Industries), David Yanton (General Manager, Nintendo UK), Ray Maguire (MD, Sony Computer Entertainment UK), the Digital Safety strand in association with the Nominet Trust …. and then we also have the teachers at the front lines themselves leading many sessions … it is not hard to see why it has been so busy.
Last night was also the LWF Awards … for those who fancy taking a break from the glitz and clam of the black tie of the BETT Awards it was a wonderful breath of fresh air. A wonderful night out in a trendy café might not sound much to many, but when you have wonderful food, good company, uni-sex toilets where the wallpaper is Fraggle Rock, He-Man or Ghostbusters (Shaun has the pictures to prove it), steampunk twitter and vanilla milkshakes … well … Peroni for Shaun and Chris … it sets up for a perfect evening of awards hosted by the irrepressible Maggie Philbin. Any person or company who was nominated could have won, but the deserving winners were heartily applauded by all. It was also good to see that Apps For Good and Mobl21, two groups we have had some good chats with, were amongst the winners
As we come to the afternoon of the last day Shaun and Chris will be heading in to Lord Puttnam and Jimmy Wales … before heading over to the other big event this week … but Chris will fill you in on that.