Baltimore's 1st EduHackDay: the results
This past weekend, Baltimore's first "EduHackDay" was held over at Digital Harbor High School in Baltimore.
Educators teamed up with computer geeks to build web and mobile apps for education. In many ways, Baltimore is becoming a little hotbed of education technology, and this grassroots effort to percolate ideas was a great effort.
I didn't get a chance to go to the event, because I was out of town. But with the help of Mike Brenner, one of the co-organizers and an advocate and conncector of startups in Baltimore, I'll share some details.
In Mike's words, here's how the weekend-long event unfolded:
We had roughly 70 attendees: ~ 40 developres, 20 designers, 10 teachers. We let the teachers pitch their ideas, read some some educator ideas that were pitched on our wish list from a global pool of teachers, and then let developers come up and pitch their own ideas. From that, we ended up voting on our favorite ideas, ending up with 10 ideas to work on throughout the weekend.
[On the] last night we had the 10 teams demo what they built to a panel of judges and the results are below.
Quick take away from me: I wanted to stimulate more activity from within our entrepreneurial community and thought education was a worthy customer / product to go after. I didn't expect folks to reinvent curriculum this weekend but I wanted to put the right problems and people in the room to show that there's a viable opportunity to build education technology products here in Baltimore. We need to be building less photo sharing apps and instead, more things that are meaningful.
The judges were:
Frank Bonsal, general partner at New Markets Venture Partners
Matt Van Italie, CAO of Baltimore City Schools, KIPP, McKinsey
Brian Eyer, Principal at Digital Harbor High School
Tom “TK” Kuegler, GP at Wasabi Ventures
Tom Murdock, Founder at Moodlerooms
Bill Ferguson, State Senator for Maryland
Scott Messinger, City Schools Teacher & Ed Tech Founder
The winning app ideas:
1st - Digital Harbor
2nd - Pluck
3rd - Pedante
4th - ParentConnect
5th - Board Speak
6th - CheckPlus
7th - Hey, Teacher
8th - What's Due?
9th - Baltimore School Watch
10th - Toader, a MakerBot project
Below are some screen shots of some of the projects:
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