We weren’t in the exhibit hall for more than 10 minutes at the National Principal’s Conference when we saw a truly innovative product that will get kids interacting with each other and engaged.
Here’s the situation, students are in class in a setting where their feedback fuels the discussion and the learning but teachers ask students to participate and all they hear is crickets. So they make it a little more interactive. Maybe they’re doing math drills with a dodge ball and when the student catches the ball they answer the question, but all the class hears is a mumble, if anything at all.
That was a huge problem and opportunity that Shane Cox saw when he started his company Peeq and created their first product, Qball. The Qball is a wireless microphone and a dodge ball mashed together into one.
It works like this.
Teacher asks a question and throws the ball to Tommy. Tommy catches the ball and talks into the ball and the whole class hears it over their in room audio system. Or even better, you’re in an assembly with 500 kids and it’s time to do some Q & A. Well it always sucks to be the one left with the question as the room clears, just because the person running the microphone around the room didn’t get to you in time. With Qball simply throw the ball to the next person with a question and voila.
Cox, who has a background in education, knew exactly what features to throw into the Qball. Like, when the ball is floating through the air it’s muted so you don’t hear any background noise. He’s also made sure that the Qball won’t interfere with existing microphones and audio equipment so it’s easy to set up, even in a conference setting, as a third or fourth mic input.
Qball will get those quieter students engaged and interactive, and you don’t need to worry about the microphone holding up. They spent a good portion of their design time on optimizing the quality of the microphone and the stability of the microphone in the ball.
Qball is perfect for the classroom, the auditorium, the board room or even big conferences. It comes in two different configurations. The regular Qball is $179 and good for a range of about 75 feet. Qball+ is $279 but will give you a range of about 300 feet so perfect for those bigger auditorium settings.
Qball setup takes about a minute and you’re up and running. You can check them out at peeq.us