Mobile learning was one of the most anticipated themes at this year’s ISTE annual conference. As educators from all over the United States and the rest of the world came to San Diego, conversations included grade-level specific questions to ensuring the hearing of children was adequately protected.
With 67 sessions devoted to BYOD-themed discussions, the range of content offered as many diverse applications as there were attendees. Since audio is such a critical component of (mobile) learning, many of the session and workshop presenters incorporated the use of headsets into their sessions (which were donated to this year’s conference by Califone).
On the exhibit hall floor, discussions excitedly included the implementation of mobile learning by students for ELL and ESL applications as well as the pending roll out of ELA within Common Core testing. Both questions were addressed at the launch of the new headset series by Califone. The To Go headset line is the first developed for educational uses and was demonstrated throughout the conference and were offered as prizes in one of the first twitter contests ever run from the ISTE conference floor.
Other learning tools shown on the floor included the launch of the company’s 8201 MP4 player, the industry’s first with built-in volume restriction for student hearing safety. Capable of connecting to the 8201, smartphones, tablets and other devices was the new JB310 jackbox. Also shown was the six-position 1216USB jackbox, the first of its kind with USB connectivity and enables student-generated podcasting and Skype capability. Both jackboxes were designed to accomodate larger groups of differentiated learners on account of increased learning center sizes.
Mobile learning coupled with sound reinforcement drew attention to the PA419, the first portable PA with an Apple-approved docking station for iPods and iPhones.
The energy throughout the conference was shared by attendees and exhibitors alike, who were reminded the best connections are the personal ones.