Definitely been busy since CUE11, so I’m glad I can finally sit down to reflect on my experience in Palm Springs. To really think things through, I’ll reflect on each session as I browse my notes before reflecting on the conference as a whole:
Creativity is the Killer App – Chris Walsh
My overall take from this session is that I need to get my students’ creativity flowing in as many different fields as possible, most especially outdoors. I need to use some of Chris’s ideas along with those of Diane Main to get my students exploring the outdoors with and without technology. I took a design thinking course this past summer, but need to apply it more within the classroom to extend our learning beyond our physical walls and typical activities. How I’m going to do that (beyond some geocaching) is beyond me.
Engagement, Differentiation, and RTI with iPad – Ms. Terri Price
I realized I’m around the “Progressing Evolution” stage of integrating iPods in the classroom according to the speaker’s stages of evolution. I think I’m actually going to move beyond this by starting the QR codes in my classroom. More on that later, but it’s the part my students seem to be most excited about.
103 Ideas to Integrate Technology In the Elementary Classroom – Gary Garfield, Suzanne McDonough
The one thing I took from this session is integrating physical activity into the rest of class. In their case, the 4th grade class compiled the miles they ran toward reaching the next California mission. Not sure how or if I can integrate this, but it is a creative idea to encourage physical activity while building excitement in the curriculum.
Carol Anne McGuire’s Keynote – Whole other blog post coming.
Michael Horn’s Keynote
This just made me think about Rocketship Education’s model of blended learning in a more serious way. Most of our district just opposed bringing Rocketship in because it’s “not innovative” and not “likely to succeed”. Much of the same way that the incumbents in any field speak about those Disruptive Innovations that come along. Think about how there was “no market” for the tablet before the iPad came out and many PC companies tried to fight it at first. Unfortunately, in education, it should be about the kids, not the incumbents or the adults.
iPods, iPads & Macs, Oh My! How to Manage a Hybrid World – Sandy Brenner and Josh Rude, along with Michael Wells
I learned about iOS profiles that you can create using the iPhone Configuration Utility. This is going to save me a lot of time. I can simply ask students to open a profile (through Dropbox, I hope) and enable or disable certain parts of the iPod without working on each one individually.
Connect With The Connected (my presentation… more appropriately titled “A Sneak Peek Into My Second Grade Classroom“)- Another post, but I do have a few things to say…
Thanks greatly to those who stopped during their busy day, especially Jen Wagner, Jan Sterns, and Sue Allen. I met Jen at TCEA, where I had a great dinner with her and a few others. She was extremely supportive during my presentation, always smiling and sending the good vibes. Jan ran my session, so I am extremely grateful to her. Sue is our district Technology Coordinator, who found some money to pay for part of my trip. It was great to share my classroom tools with her, since I know she is always working on developing the technological prowess of teachers in our district.
Developing Student Collaboration Skills with Google Docs – Chris Bell, Jim Sill
Only was in this session for about 20 minutes after wandering through some other so-so sessions, but learned so much. I came out of this session excited to use Google Docs more often in my classroom. Also, I know that there is so much more for me to learn about Google Docs. Anyone want to tutor me or pass along some helpful sites?
Destroying “Death By Powerpoint” (also know by its official title: Producing Powerful and Effective Presentations) – Ken Shelton
While I think I already knew most of what Ken was sharing and try to make presentations in the same fashion, I mainly attended this one to hear from such a powerful voice in my virtual PLN. He was an extremely great and effective presenter himself and I came away with two key learnings: Reading slides as they are being presented makes the information harder to process, and you need to put yourself in the audience’s place before you ever think your presentation is ready. He also motivated me to start Project 365, so be watching for some photography to begin to grace my blog. (Maybe this will get me to post more often!)
Leslie Fisher’s Keynote
Just got some good ideas on technology to use in the classroom. Nothing that will alter my teaching much though.
Well, hopefully tomorrow I can get to an actual reflection on my conversations and the conference as a whole. In other words, more (and better) insights to come.