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Excited 2014

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Dublin Castle was buzzing with over 100 vibrant young people from all over the country, there to take part in the visionary “Excited Digital Learning Festival”. The event, the brainchild of Minister Ciaran Cannon and Brendan Kirk is being run over 2 days – with the first day concentrating on what children think should be taught vis a vis technology and innovation in schools (www.excited.ie).

With a heavyweight guest speaker list ranging from our own digital champion Lord David Puttnam, through to Marty Cooper – founder of the Mobile Phone, Sal Khan, Founder of Khan Academy,  Sean O’Sullivan, SOS Ventures, and Dr Rene Lydisken MD of Lego Education Europe,  to name but a few – equally heavyweight is the number of inspiring innovative teachers and educators coming together for the first time under the auspices of the EXCITED Project.

Minister Cannon’s vision is to bring together all the disparate organisations who are doing such great work in the field of championing technology and innovation in schools to formulate one common purpose and direction.  In addition to the 2 day conference the NDRC are here running a mini-start up incubator programme for children.  This is an incredibly valuable exercise as when you examine it the timing between schoolgoing children with a passion for tech and innovation becoming viable start-ups is getting shorter and shorter.

As Marty Cooper so eloquently put it on the morning of the festival “Ireland is leading the way in terms of technology and education”.  No mean feat for a small island nation, but then again, we stand shoulder to shoulder with the best tech hubs in the World.

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