Sunday, June 29, 2014

ISTE - day 1 & day 2 take aways

It is that time of year again - ISTE! Its the time when ed techies from around the world come together to learn, grow, share, and connect with each other.  I have been fortunate to attend my 2nd ISTE conference.

So, with day 2 coming to a close (and day 3 just around the corner), I wanted to take a moment to get my thoughts about day 1 and day 2 out there.  Maybe you have the same thoughts. Maybe yours are completely different.  Either way, its a great start for a conversation on day 3.

Day 1 take aways:

~I was able to mark something off of my bucket list - present at ISTE.  Its amazing how slow 5 minutes can be when you are standing in front of A LOT of people!  Being part of the first Ignite Session was an honor and so powerful. I had the opportunity to share my passion and excitement for the Aaron Jones Family Interactive Center.
~The Bloggers Cafe is a great place .. period!  Last year, I was intimidated of the Bloggers Cafe and thinking back I should not have been. This year I embraced the Bloggers Cafe and had the opportunity to catch up with ed tech friends I connect with on Twitter and make new connections/friends.

Day 2 take aways:

~There are some words that come to mind in a big way when I look over my notes, images, and the ever scrolling #ISTE2014 Twitter feed. Those words (for me) are:

create ..and share

CONNECT - If you want to grow and learn, you need to find people and groups that will help you out. By connecting with others that have the same passion or interests, you can learn about different perspectives on a topic which will in turn help you grow and expand your knowledge and understanding. Connecting also shows you that you are not alone. There is no excuse for leaving ISTE without making at least one new connection!

CREATE - I have yet to see a session about how to create awesome worksheets. When I say create, I mean something beyond a multiple choice test. Create a video. Create a blog post. Create a visual for a project you do.  When you create, then you next step (hopefully) is to share what you created.  Don't be afraid to share.  In one session, I believe Adam Bellow's, he said to share and don't worry if its perfect or complete, just share.  Someone will find what you have to say interesting and relevant.  Don't assume everyone already knows what you have to create and share.

COLLABORATE - This goes along with connect.  I get excited when I see a group of teachers in an area connecting and collaborating on an idea to make something happen.  Find someone who gets excited about the same thing as you and collaborate on making whatever that thing is happen.

CULTIVATE - We need to work towards cultivating thinkers in the classroom. This includes students and teachers. Does the classroom allow for students to just learn from you say or do they have the opportunity to think and explore for themselves. Are you cultivating future leaders or followers? The session on the Genius Hour and 20% time was such a great "you can do this .. so go did it" moment.

I am excited for day 3 of ISTE. I will enter the day knowing I will learn, grow, and meet others just like me!


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