Adam Wildbore reports: The BT hothouse day consisted of three main components; the tour of BT’s innovation suite, the brainstorming of new ideas and uses for Augmented Reality and finally our presentations. The tour was an interesting element of the day, playing with up and coming technology as well as questioning the use of wifi controlled tech to turn on and off just about every gadget in the home. Robotic technology was also on display and the whole experience was aimed at stimulating our creative juices. On our return we had a period of idea creation followed by much debate, when we were asked to rate our ideas against the BT assessment criteria in the same way as BT employees do with their investment projects.
The presentation component of the day was brilliant! The idea my group presented was ‘augment my phobia’, the idea concentrated around how augmented reality may be used as a solution to phobias. I felt the experience of presenting a new, innovative idea on a large stage was a unique experience that enabled me to grow my confidence in regards to public speaking.
Lead teacher report:
The theme of this year’s Hot house was Augmented Reality.
Our students readily engaged in healthy discussions of their own ideas which ranged from curing phobias, to treating injured soldiers on the battlefield, to an application which assessed the contents of a fridge and suggested food preparation ideas.
Darren Lewis, Principal Innovation Consultant, said that he loved the energy and creativity coming, from the group work. Other mentors said how refreshing it was to work with our students instead of the, usual hothouse users. Somehow young people seem to lose this creativity if it is not nurtured and developed, which is why we are especially proud to offer such a wonderful day of personal development to our Y12 students.
Each activity was given a pre planned time frame and a 5 foot high stop watch gave the students a constant idea of how well they were progressing against time constraints. This added to the pressure on the day as well as the pressure of having to perform in front of 100+ people. The atmosphere was kind and warm, everyone cheered at the end of each presentation. However, this was a competition and there were some demanding questions given by other team members. I was also delighted by the quality of the answers given to the BT judges.
Our thanks go to the judges, all senior managers/directors at BT, who had a few head scratching moments trying to choose winners from the extremely high quality of presentations and to Darren Lewis who guided the students through the process and set time frames for every activity.
We would like to express our thanks to BT who have given their time and expertise to us yet again. We have enjoyed a close relationship with BT over the last 3 years and are continuing to look at ways in which we can work together to enhance student’s learning and skill development.