The Excited Movement began its journey in 2014 with the organising of the two-day EXCITED Digital Learning Festival in Dublin Castle. As an independent entity it has the unique ability to bring together the diverse interests of students, teachers, industry and Government in a safe, non-agenda environment with the single vision of improving the role of technology in education.
It has established channels to ensure ideas can be delivered into tangible projects and actions such as EU Code Week, The Hour of Code, The Digital Youth Council, Africa Code Week and initiatives in Robotics. The pace at which these innovations in digital education are being adopted and engaged with is clearly gaining momentum, with 160,126 young people and teachers directly impacted by programmes delivered by or in association with the EXCITED Digital Learning Movement in 2015.
· The EXCITED Digital Learning Movement directly supported Europe’s first Digital Youth Council, founded in 2014 after the inaugural EXCITED Digital Learning Festival.
· It coordinates and promotes EU Code Week in Ireland in cooperation with the country EU Code Week ambassadors and Coder Dojo. In each of the first 3 years of EU Code Week, Ireland led the EU with the highest number of coding events organised, with over 10,000 young people participating last year.
· EXCITED also coordinates the Irish events for the international movement Hour of Code, which engages over 15,000 students across the country in 2015.
· EXCITED is the designated country partner and organiser of FIRST LEGO League in Ireland, supported by SAP reaching over 300 young people.
· EXCITED has collaborated with the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources and the Department of Education & Skills in the roll out of the pilot Digital Schools Champions programme, providing second level students with opportunities to engage with some of the leading technology companies, to be recognised for their digital skills and to showcase their digital achievements on a national platform.
· The Digital Schools of Distinction is an awards programme which promotes, recognises and encourages best practice in the use of technology in primary schools. Supported by HP Ireland and Microsoft Ireland, the award has been developed to help schools to further integrate technology into the classroom by providing a pathway and resources for schools who are seeking to do more with technology. EXCITED showcases a selection of these projects during the EXCITED Digital Learning Festival in Dublin Castle.
· Phocused Mojo training and Power Up are two projects EXCITED are designing and delivering in partnerships with CESI (Computers in Education Society of Ireland), delivering digital training for teachers that reached over 16,000 students in the last year.
· EXCITED hosts the EA Robotics annual competitions. Supported by EA Games and Bank of Ireland Innovation, this unique competition pits rival robots from secondary schools throughout Ireland against one another. All participants, 40% of whom are girls, gain a deep understanding of programming and engineering in making their way to the national finals. This year 514 students will bring 176 robots to battle it out for the winning trophy in Dublin Castle.
· LearnStorm Ireland is the free maths challenge for students of all abilities powered by Khan Academy and delivered by Camara Ireland. In 2016, over 30,000 students aged 8-16 signed up for the challenge. This year’s LearnStorm Ireland final celebration is hosted in association with EXCITED. By the time they get to Dublin Castle, the 200 students invited to represent their school and county have earned their stripes online by mastering and persevering with learning maths skills as well as developing effective learning strategies.
· Africa Code Week and Refugee Code Week are international programmes EXCITED have initiated as a result of the success of Ireland’s participation in EU Code Week. The first Africa Code Week took place in 2015, in partnership with SAP and reached 88,763 young people across 17 countries. Planning for the 2016 events are well underway with a target engagement of 150,000 young people. Refugee Code Week will be launched at the UN Humanitarian Summit and will be delivering coding training and workshops to refugees in a number of countries including Jordan, Turkey, Lebanon and Rwanda.
‘EXCITED 2016 – Celebrating Success and Sharing Innovation’, is Ireland’s only Digital Learning Festival. The Festival reflects and celebrates just some of these young people and teachers and their incredible achievements using digital technologies to revolutionise the way learning is being delivered.
EXCITED is supported by Science Foundation Ireland, the largest competitive funder of science and innovation in Ireland and takes place in Dublin Castle on Friday 20th and Saturday 21st of May. It will feature over 1,200 participants gathering to share their passion for enhancing learning through the use of technology.
Further information on all events is available at www.excited.ie