Ohio Educational Technology Conference Day One

While I did not make it to all the sessions I was hoping to today, I would still say it was a success.  The major theme I took from the special presentation speakers (Jaime Casap – Google Education Evangelist and Hadi Partovi – Code.org and Hour of Code Founder), was that 60% of today’s kindergarten students will have careers in jobs that do not exist yet.  How do we prepare our students for these positions that have not even become thoughts in someone’s mind yet? We need to grow skillsets in our students and understand that they live in the age of information.  The classic regurgitation of facts has never been a sign of true learning, and it is even less relevant today.

In the vendor area, I was able to run into some great folks that have fantastic products.

The first person I ran into was Shawn Hendrickson from ITSaavy.  I have worked with Shawn on a few different products, and he has also been very generous when it has come to sponsorship of events I have put on.  Shawn and I got into a good discussion on the Amazon Echo and it’s uses in the home.  If you are at OETC, be sure to stop by and see all of the awesome products they have available.

I ran into was Alex Yang from IPEVO.  This company has great products from multi-iPad chargers, document cameras, interactive whiteboards and more.  The best part of IPEVO is that they keep their margins low to keep products affordable.  They realize that schools are working on slim budgets and some teachers buy items out of their own product.  Alex hooked me up with some goodies to give away at our presentation tomorrow morning.

While wondering the hallways, I noticed a gentleman carrying around a foam dodgeball and the logo on his shirt looked very familiar.  Shane Cox is the CEO/Salesman/Spokesperson and many other titles with his invention, the Qball.  I was able to speak with Shane for a good amount of time and he even allowed me to do a Live Periscope with him (view here). The Qball is a game changer for the classroom. It is a simple to install microphone set up inside of a foam ball.  The wireless receiver is plugged into your classroom speakers and question/answer sessions immediately come to life.  Not only will the students be able to hear the teacher better using a microphone, but they will be able to hear each others answers clearly.  Students will also be engaged by the introduction of a brightly colored ball that produces sound.  Shane is letting us use the Qball for our presentation on “So You Want To Start An EdCamp? Lessons From EdCamp Ohio” tomorrow morning. Our session is scheduled for 8am in room C223-225.