BETT 2016 Guest Blog: Steljes Limited – interactive touch screens with Windows 10

Steljes Limited are another Microsoft in Education partner exhibiting in the main hall at BETT 2016, showcasing their new VIVIDtouch interactive touch screens with an integrated Windows 10 computer. Like a number of partners, they have also kindly contributed a guest post, which can be found below.

You can find Steljes Limited at BETT 2016 on stand C190.


Steljes Limited

I well remember the introduction of the first Interactive Whiteboard (IWB) to my school many years ago. The impact on learners and teachers alike was incredible. It led to one y3 child wondering if the ink in the end of his finger would ever run out! It also encouraged technophobic teachers to embrace the use of technology in their classrooms. 2016 sees display technology, regarded as “old hat” by some technology evangelists, coming once more to the fore, as it becomes “turbocharged” by the integration of the features of Office 365 and the incredible Microsoft Ink for the new Edge browser and Microsoft Office apps.

Think of it as a massive 65, 75 or 84-inch mobile device, hanging on the wall, with all of the smooth gesture controls we have all become so used to on our phones and you will begin to see what I mean – technology never stands still!

A recent 2015 research study by Professor Don Passey of Lancaster University illustrated that the effective use of Display Technologies in a Requires Improvement (R.I.) primary school could transform teaching from being described by OFSTED as “Dusty” and lacking pupil engagement to becoming effective, inclusive and engaging. Impact was also demonstrated via the usual school improvement measures.

Large classroom displays are generally regarded by the profession as a “must have” technology to facilitate the core teaching and learning function of demonstration and modelling. Also, schools are currently realising that their initial investment in projector and Interactive Whiteboard technology is in need of a refresh. Building on research, and pioneering a quantum leap in display technology via the superior “InGlass™” touch; Steljes have bought to the market an innovative solution to support schools in their replacement of such crucial classroom technology.

The VIVIDtouch display brings an affordable 4K clarity to the classroom. Gone are the shadows cast by projectors and the misalignment of pens and dull colours and graphics. These are replaced by “state-of-the-art” crystal clear images and super smooth inking in all light levels. This left handed teacher, for one, appreciates the accuracy and fluency of the Microsoft Ink based pen and multi-touch input. It has been thought through from a classroom perspective with screen blank and freeze frame buttons right where teachers need them on the front of the screen, alongside quick access to input USB Keys, web cams, doc cams and game controllers.

The master stroke, however, is the seamless integration of an inbuilt Windows 10 computer into the display. No matter how hard you look it is difficult to work out how all of that processing power has been built in. However, switch it on and without the need to connect a desktop or laptop; the familiar Windows 10 log-on screen leads to a full Windows 10 experience with access to all of the Office 365 storage and online apps that both teachers and pupils have come to rely on. Would you believe it? Coding gets a look in too, with the processing power delivering both Kodu and Minecraft. Google and Apple users are not left out either as this full computer allows web access to their key documents and online apps!

Seeing the VIVIDtouch, network managers and school leaders will, no doubt, be contemplating life without the need for the expensive replacement of class based devices tied to a display. Teachers will see an easy route to achieve the nirvana of accessing their work files and essential software from wherever they are; teaching without the need to lug a heavy device around if they don’t want to.

Pragmatic Ed. Tech. professionals have long realised that the effective use of technology for teaching and learning is not about one technology on its own, but the integration of multiple technologies with well-planned curriculum opportunities delivered by outstanding teaching. This new VIVIDtouch interactive touch screen with inbuilt Windows 10 brings two of those key ingredients together and provides a linchpin for effective classroom practice.

In my opinion, however, the VIVIDouch screen will really come into its own when learners are allowed to use it to log on to their O365 accounts and gather round the screen to work collaboratively or use Skype to reach out and connect with classrooms around the globe. That will be inspirational, I can’t wait!

David Whyley, January 2016

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