Recently we've been investigating how to take some hands-on Internet of Things making into school with fellow residents-at-DoES-Liverpool Imagication. We submitted it to the Digital Maker call and were one of the seven projects chosen. Here's the video we made to pitch the idea, and the press release we're putting out about the project. More to follow as it gets underway.
Children in Merseyside are getting a cutting-edge technology treat this summer thanks to a new partnership of innovative Merseyside companies who are bringing the very best of new technologies into schools.
Internet of Things is the next stage of Internet technology being pioneered right here in Liverpool at the DoES Liverpool start-up and maker community, and in particular by MCQN Ltd. At the DoES Liverpool offices bubble machines connect to twitter, a clock shows where the Mersey ferries are, updating in real time over the Internet, and the coffee machine reports how many cups are left to the web. MCQN founder Adrian McEwen said "The Internet of Things frees technology from being trapped behind screens and keyboard, and lets it enhance everyday objects to give them new capabilities and behaviours to make them more useful and playful."
Imagication, STEM education specialists, will be working with schools to help children build a weather station computer from bare components, which connects to the Internet and downloads the latest weather directly to the classroom, driving motors and lighting LED's making the project come alive as the weather changes.
Director of Imagication Kirsty Sparrow told us "Children love being able to build and take things apart and electronics and maker skills make the most of that. Electronics and programming really are a part of everyday life now, and this lets children see how easy it is to get started, and gain a passion for digital making."
This work was made possible by a bid from Nesta - a leading UK supporter of new approaches to digital making and learning - together with Mozilla and Nominet Trust through the 'Digital Makers Fund', and supported by John Moores University Open Labs. Lindsay Sharples from Open Labs praised the award saying "Liverpool has a thriving community of creative and innovative businesses and as one of only a handful of projects approved by NESTA throughout the UK, this is a further endorsement of the creativity that exists in our local community."