Blog Post By Ellice Plant
This holiday season, members of the LearnLaunch community will celebrate across the globe, in body and in spirit. Whether we are hiking in the California desert, eating tamales (yum) or bloody beef (…less yum) with Texan family, or welcoming the New Year Colombian-style with grapes and red underwear, we will all be sending up our wishes for peace on earth. One other thing we all have in common: specific wish lists of edtech gifts, for giving and for getting. Read on to find our recommendations and our favorite gift-giving traditions.
What is the gift you are most excited to give this year?
Hannah from EdTech Times: I am giving my 11-year-old cousin Evan an Insta-YouTuber kit. I’m excited to teach him how to use all the equipment. 🙂
Thomas from Sutori: My “Make America Great Again” hat for my brother who was denied entry to the States.
Nikki from Zulama: My sons are both away at college, and this year they will both only be home at the same time for two days. Instead of exchanging gifts, we are hosting an “open house”—basically, 48 hours of cooking, drinking, eating, and laughing with lots of people who haven’t seen them in a while!
Eileen from LearnLaunch: Starting a 529 plan for my first grandson!
Joya from MindBridge Partners: Game development course for my God brother – it’s going to be a game changer! (Get it??) He’s 14, and he’s really interested in a game developer career and needs exposure. Nothing is offered near him, through school or local offerings.
Michael from CodingConnect: Raspberry Pi with Kodi installed
What are some edtech gifts on your own wish list?
Hannah from EdTech Times: Twelve EdTech podcasters!!!!
Eileen from LearnLaunch: Wonder Workshop’s Dash and Dot robots
Joya from MindBridge Partners: A General Assembly UX design or product development course
Michael from CodingConnect: Inland Arduinos, Hubsan Quadcopters, Raspberry Pis, and Sennheiser Noise Cancelling Headphones
What edtech gifts are on your list for giving this year–even if they are out of your price range?
Hannah from EdTech Times: I want to give a CogniToys Dino to baby Maya!
Thomas at Sutori: I will be buying my niece a fun learning app on iPad. My best rec for anyone, though, is Sutori Unlimited!
Dave from TeachersConnect: We would give every K-12 teacher a Lifeline–a way to get an immediate answer to an important or embarrassing question–from a trusted and reliable source. We’d also give teacher prep programs the data they need to make sweeping, evidence based changes to their curricula and to provide value to their graduates even after graduation.
Nikki from Zulama: Osmo is a great toy that combines digital and “real world” play, and I’ve been giving it to all my nieces and nephews. I’ve heard that their adults love it, too! If I could afford it, I would give every student around the world a life-changing Zulama game design experience to help them imagine [and achieve] their dreams.
Eileen from LearnLaunch: I want to buy Osmo, too, when my 8 month-old grandson Arthur is old enough!
Joya from MindBridge Partners: Subscription to a course on Udemy or a few months with Treehouse. My family hasn’t begun exploring online learning, and I think they’ll have a blast once they start!
Michael from CodingConnect: The Raspberry Pi 3 is the perfect open-ended EdTech gift. The RPi can be a simple introduction to GNU/Linux, programming, or free and open source software. If price were no issue, I would give the Libreboot T400. The Libreboot is a Thinkpad T400 with a free and open source BIOS that allows you to run entirely free and open source software on the laptop from the second you turn the computer until you turn it off.
Steve from LearnBolt: A LearnBolt subscription – collect, organize, and share training in minutes! A must for today’s “Now” generation EdTecher 😉
Tell us what gift giving rituals bring you joy.
Joya from MindBridge Partners: The goal is more about wrapping gifts in the most outlandish way possible with existing house materials (e.g. Pillow cases, strings made of Mardi Gras beads, tinfoil baking pans, construction paper cutouts). On holiday morning, everyone gets a turn unwrapping their gift while everyone else watches. It ends up being hilarious.
Michael from Coding Connect: One side of my family is giving donations to charities. Charities are in more need than ever at the moment. Support the EFF, FSF, and the ACLU to protect your EdTech freedom.
Eileen from LearnLaunch: That early morning Christmas day ritual, complete with huge preparation, staying up late wrapping gifts and filling stockings.
Thomas from Sutori: We do Secret Santa every year within the company. It’s a lot of fun and fun team building activity! We put a set limit at $20 per gift.
Hannah from EdTech Times: I guess the Christmas stocking is my favorite part. There’s candy in there.
Ellice Plant is a writer and holistic health counselor in Brooklyn, NY. You can find more about her practice at brooklynwholehealth.org.