Opening Keynote: Michael Rosen

Tuesday 3rd July 2018, 6:00pm - 7:15pm BST

Crucible Main Stage

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CMC Advisory Committee member Stuart Dredge produced this additional report on the Opening Keynote.

Acclaimed children’s novelist, poet, broadcaster, columnist and former Children’s Laureate Michael Rosen delivered the opening keynote at this year’s CMC, championing creativity and imagination in the face of what he calls “data-driven education”.

After decades working in the world of public service broadcasting, children’s theatre and educational publishing, Michael Rosen has become a YouTube phenomenon, with over 240,000 subscribers and 50 million-plus views of his content. The internet has given him access to an audience he could never have imagined as a young BBC trainee working on ‘Play School’ in the 1970s.

Spending so much time working with children – and as a parent – Michael’s is acutely aware that the relationship with social media has its downside too.

Rosen says: “I’m riding the crest of the digital wave, I thought. Only to discover that what I was riding was a tiger: a tiger with an insatiable appetite and an audience only too eager to be eaten. We want tigers to roam free. Of course we do. But that doesn’t mean we’d give our children to one. So what do we do?

The Opening Keynote begins with a performance by Rio-Leanna