Dec 03 2006
Philips workshop tomorrow
I have been invited down to London for a workshop run by Philips. You may be wondering why I am involved with such a big electronics company?
Well earlier on this year I was exploring our options in terms of perhaps buying a second interactive device for our early years classrooms. I had heard all this talk of a “critical mass” of IWBs in any one classroom – but I don’t really subscribe much to that view. I think that if a room permits it and the learning environment can be further enhanced then a second IWB or other device could be installed. So I got to looking…
I wanted to learn more about the sort of plasma, LCD options that were beginning to emerge and stumbled upon Philips’ site about a concept product called the Entertaible. As you can read from the product description it is aimed at the gaming market – but the features intrigued me. I was for a while thinking about how we could have a flat plasma screen or IWB that would allow for a different learning surface. The most important technological difference between the Entertaible and other products is it’s ability to react with physical objects on the screen. So you put a block counter in a square and it glows or tracks it’s movements. Armed with this briefest of knowledge I could clearly see a path into education – so I sent them an email. I sent it directly to Gerard Hollemans of Philips Research in Eindhoven, the Netherlands. All the email consisted of was a “Have you considered it’s use in education?” type question.
Well a few emails and conference phone calls later I was having to ask my headteacher if I could go to Eindhoven as Philips research laboratories and the guys behind the Entertaible wanted to meet me !!
Now those of you reading this who are currently slogging away in a classroom somewhere know that this is pretty far removed from your average day as a primary teacher! Of course my headteacher said I could go. So in early summer this year I travelled to Eindhoven and met Gerard and Maurice of Philips Entertaible. They allowed me to have a go with the product and it totaly blew me away! So, so, so, so MUCH potential in a classroom. We discussed the educational impact it could have and if there were possibilities for it to be used in a classroom.
It all went quiet for a while – but they recently invited me down to a London workshop about the launch of Entertaible into different markets. I am not really sure what to expect but they said they wanted my expert input…mmm let’s hope that I can live up to that. More soon.