What the Boxlight Team Learned at ISTE
Our team has returned from this year’s ISTE Conference & Expo in the Mile High City. The event, as always, provided plenty of great opportunities to exchange ideas and information with educators, students, and journalists about all things related to education technology and technology implementation strategies.
We’ve asked our team members to share their most significant observations from ISTE 2016. So, whether or not you made it to Denver, you can gain some valuable information from the largest educational technology trade show in North America.
But before we get down to business, we want to celebrate a milestone: the company’s first conference as Boxlight and Mimio combined! In addition, we are pleased to have won Tech & Learning’s ISTE Best in Show Award for our P12 laser interactive touch projectors.
Top Takeaways from ISTE
Stevan Vigneaux, Director of Project Management
Stevan’s Big ISTE TakeawayEducators expressed strong interest in the Labdisc™ portable STEM labs, particularly when integrated with MimioStudio™ classroom software.
Industry News: During Sunday’s opening general session, ISTE and Microsoft announced that they will be combining and expanding several of their initiatives to ensure educators around the world have access to school planning and professional development resources. To streamline the development of 21st century schools, the two organizations will bring together resources such as the ISTE and Microsoft Blueprint for School Transformation; a series of new professional development courses aligned with the blueprint; and tools such as the ISTE Lead & Transform Diagnostic Tool and Microsoft’s Self Reflection Tool.
Company News: ISTE attendees expressed a strong interest in our preview of an exciting new development: the MimioContribute™ learning system, coming to schools in the fall. We understand that learning is driven by more than just hardware and software. When the technology is used dynamically, it really does enhance the way we learn and teach. This new system provides research-based lessons, best practices for teaching and facilitation strategies, and built-in guidance on technology integration to make collaborative learning easier. When the MimioContribute system is combined with technology and Mimio software, it creates deeper engagement and gives teachers more ways to facilitate instruction – while saving them valuable time.
Pat Henry, EVP Global Sales of Boxlight
Pat’s Big TakeawaysEducators are more interested in learning how to improve instructional practices than in hardware specs. Assessment-driven instruction is a priority for schools and districts. Districts want students to own their learning and want solutions that facilitate collaboration and competency-based learning, which allows students to progress at their own rate.
Industry News: On Monday, June 27, Amazon announced the fall launch of Amazon Inspire, an online marketplace with tens of thousands of free lesson plans, worksheets, and other instructional materials for teachers. The education site will include features that are familiar to Amazon shoppers (e.g., star ratings for products, a search bar at the top of the page, etc.).
Company News: One of our announcements at ISTE was that Boxlight customers who have been using the company’s array of display products since 2009 can now download the easy-to-use MimioStudio classroom software for free! This will allow teachers who already use Boxlight interactive displays to create interactive lessons with MimioStudio software, as well as to leverage the MimioMobile™ collaboration and assessment app. This app allows students to work on an individual student activity on almost any device. It also gives the teacher the ability to highlight, discuss, and share student work with the entire class. With MimioStudio software and the MimioMobile app, more students and teachers will be able to enjoy collaborative and whole-class learning. These classrooms will also be able to integrate with other Mimio products, such as the MimioPad™ wireless pen tablet and the MimioView™document camera.
Carol Mazzuca, Southwest Regional Manager
Carol’s Big TakeawayMy ISTE experience reaffirmed the idea that educators’ conversations are moving way past hardware. Folks came to the booth with specific hardware inquiries, but we’d go from the initial “How much is this panel?” question to more involved conversations about the capabilities of the software. And once they got involved in the demo and became aware of the possibilities, I could see their wheels start turning.
Industry News: Samsung shared a survey revealing that 85% of teachers feel that students will respond positively to virtual reality, 60% want to make it part of their classroom experience, but only 2% are actually using VR right now. The survey is part of Samsung's push into classroom VR with its own headset.
Company News: Visitors to the Boxlight and Mimio booth were the first to experience the newly launched GlobiLab™ app for Chromebook laptops. A joint offering from Boxlight and K-12 science technology pioneer Globisens, the GlobiLab software communicates wirelessly with Labdisc multisensor STEM devices, allowing for full setup and control of the devices. Additionally, the software’s sophisticated functions for presenting and analyzing data open the door to meaningful collaboration and help students develop skilled scientific responses.
Christopher Leonardo Sums It Up
“The first half of 2016 has seen exciting change and innovation within the industry and at our company,” stated Christopher Leonardo, the director of research and development for Boxlight. “We are already looking forward to ISTE 2017 in San Antonio, TX, to see what exciting new technologies we will be able to create for the world of technology-driven educators.”
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