Roamer guides to award victory;Information technology

26th February 1999 at 00:00
Hi-tech news by Chris Johnston

A word-processor and a floor turtle were voted teachers' favourite items of software and equipment at the BETT education technology exhibition in London last month.

Some 250 schools voted for their favourite product from a shortlist of five in the primary equipment and software categories.

The software award went to Textease Multimedia, made by Derby-based firm Softease Ltd. This is a word-processor with desktop-publishing features. Users treat the screen as a piece of paper on which they can place and move text, graphics, sound and video clips. It allows pupils to link separate files together easily in multimedia projects. Documents can also be converted for posting on to a Website.

BECTA, the government's education technology agency, says Textease meets a wide range of national curriculum requirements and that it is accessible for key stage 1 and 2 and beyond. The Parents Information Network has awarded Textease its Quality Mark for its user-friendliness and creative potential. It costs pound;85 (ex-VAT) for a single user.

The primary equipment award was won by Valiant Technology's Roamer, a control technology robot. Pupils can program Roamer to move forwards, backwards, sideways and at an angle. It can turn through 360 degrees and draw patterns on paper. It is used to introduce young pupils to geometry, maths and data inputting, but is also useful for music, art and design. It can help children with sensory impairments to develop communication skills.

Helen Logan, an educational IT consultant in Bradford, says teachers like Roamer because it helps with difficult curriculum areas while pupils think it is fun to use.

The programming experience that pupils gain by using it gives a foundation for work with computers in later years. Programs can be stored in a computer and downloaded. Roamer costs pound;95 and a range of activities and other information about using it can be found on Valiant's Website.

Softease: 01322 204911 Valiant Technology: 0181 673 2233

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar,, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today