Bett is one of the largest edtech trade shows in the world with nearly 1000 exhibitors and around 35,000 attendees, and this year it’s bigger than ever with the addition of the Education Show, aimed at senior leaders.
We know it can feel overwhelming. So we’ve pooled our knowledge about the show and gathered our top tips to help you make your visit to Bett 2019 more manageable and productive.
*You might also like our 2018 blog post Shopping for devices at Bett? The great device debate
Avoid wasting time queuing on the day – pre-register and print your badge in advance.
2. Come to our talk on digital criticality
We’ll be in the Bett Arena on Friday 25 January 13:30 -14:00 with Fact or fake? Developing critical learners in the digital age.
We’re going to explore what a critical mindset means in an online age of deep fakes, fauxtography and deliberate disinformation spreading swiftly across social media. It’s not just timely and relevant but also practical – come and discover some practical ways to engage children in critical evaluation of digital information in a range of contexts, supporting their learning and development both as consumers and creators of content of all kinds.
Still need convincing? Here’s five compelling reasons why you should come to our talk.
Not at Bett on Friday (or at all)? Don’t panic! We’ll be putting our talk – including video and slides – online afterwards. We’ll also be featuring all our digital criticality resources in a special edition of our weekly newsletter – sign up now to make sure you don’t miss it.
3. Plan your visit
Have a focus for your visit. Are you interested in VR? Do you need more printers? Know what you want to research, prepare your questions in advance and choose a few suppliers to visit to compare and contrast. The BETT site has a great filtering feature that allows you to pick out suppliers by sector, subject and product.
4. Download the new and improved app
The Bett app is a really handy way of planning your day and navigating the show. It’s available for download on both android and ios and has been updated this year to let you pinpoint specific suppliers and create your own route map around the show floor. It also features Connect@Bett, a free AI-powered contact recommendation function.
5. Think comfy shoes and snacks
Your day will be long and tiring. ExCeL is situated within a 100-acre site in Royal Victoria Dock, the main exhibition space covers more than 41,000 square metres and walking from one end of the venue to the other can take a long time. Your fitbit will love you. So, wear comfy shoes, take a bottle of water and pack some snacks. There are lots of places to buy food but the queues can be long and the food is expensive. Save yourself the bother and pack a sandwich.
6. Check out the seminars
It’s worth spending a bit of time pre-visit picking out one or two seminars of interest. BETT offers a huge number of talks and these, combined with the free sessions provided by the suppliers, can leave you feeling like you’ve spent your day rushing from one venue to another. So, choose your seminars in advance and plan strategically as they also provide a chance for a bit of downtime in your day. Here are a few recommendations to get you started:
Lifelong kindergarten: cultivating creativity through projects, passion, peers and play
23 Jan, 12.00-12.30, Bett Arena
Mitchel Resnik, LEGO professor of learning research, MIT, will explain why kindergarten-style learning is ideally suited to the needs of today’s society, with examples of technologies and activities developed by his research group at the MIT Media Lab, including the Scratch programming language and online community.
The classroom’s your stage, give creativity a starring role
24 Jan, 14.00-14.30, Bett Arena
Sir Anthony Seldon reveals how infusing creative capacities into any subject at all levels of study can have a profound impact on a young person’s learning and confidence.
Making technology work for schools: lessons from EDUCATE
24 Jan, 15.00-15.30 The Bett Arena
Hosted by Knowledge Lab, UCL, this session will explore the exciting and transformational learning that is possible with technology, as well as providing practical approaches on how to successfully integrate new technology into your school based on EDUCATE’s work with teachers.
7. Check out the website for resources
Whether you’re at Bett or not, its website is worth a delve for interesting articles and resources. Take a look at EDUCATE’s edtech checklist for teachers, for example, or videos of talks recorded at the show.
8. Don’t get stuck in your ways. Or lost
There are some new areas to look out for this year. The Escape Room is an immersive experience for visitors to interact with classroom solutions and explore new products hands-on. Peer-to-Peer Connect is a separate space on the show floor for educators to meet away from the crowds, to relax and share information. There are also Bett Lates – content and networking events outside of traditional show hours.
And if you’re lost…there are information stations in the main entrance to the building. If you need help finding a stand or have any questions about the show then head for these. It could save you a lot of time.
9. Use social media
Keep track of the trending topics and people. BETT has a facebook and twitter account. Use the hashtag #BETT2019 and get involved or just keep abreast of the hot topics of the day. Don’t forget to follow us @LdnCLC – we’ll be tweeting useful info from around the show. And remember a spare charger for your phone…
10. Come and see us!
Did we mention we’re giving a talk at Bett? About digital criticality? Oh yes. We’ll be hanging around afterwards if you’d like a chat so do come and say hello.
Plus, London CLC has also been shortlisted for a Bett award!
- Bett runs from 23-26 January at the Excel Centre, Royal Victoria Dock, London. Visit the BETT website for more information.