Excited festival to return to Dublin this month

9 May 2016

Scene from Excited 2015. Image vie Excited Digital Learning Festival

Excited, the country’s biggest digital learning festival, returns for its third year on 20 and 21 May, with aims of encouraging both students and teachers to improve the role of technology in education.

Launched back in 2014, the Excited Digital Learning Festival is one of the biggest education events in the Irish calendar and a collaboration of a number of Irish and international organisations, including Science Foundation Ireland (SFI), the Digital Youth Council, Khan Academy and Camara Ireland.

Like the previous two years, Excited 2016 will be held in Dublin Castle, where there is expected to be 1,200 participants taking part in a range of events to be held across the two days.

A number of new events for 2016

Among these will be the national finals of EA Robotics, which pits rival robots from secondary schools throughout Ireland against one another; the national finals of LearnStorm, a free maths challenge for students of all abilities, and the Excited Digital Mega Meet for Ireland’s most innovative teachers.

LearnStorm has become one of the most popular maths challenges in the country, as well as abroad, with 30,000 Irish students aged eight-to-16-years-old signing up for the challenge this year.

In Dublin Castle, however, 200 students will be invited to represent their school and county, having earned their stripes online by mastering and persevering with learning maths skills.

Also planned for the festival is the HP Digital Schools of Distinction awards programme, which promotes, recognises and encourages best practice in the use of technology in primary schools.

Speaking of the festival, Taoiseach Enda Kenny said: “Over the last number of years I have seen the good work being done by Excited in developing our young people’s digital skills and empowering them to learn independently.

“The Excited Digital Learning Festival is a wonderful celebration of the talent and commitment to excellence of our teachers and students.”

Colm Gorey was a senior journalist with Silicon Republic