Friday, June 29, 2012

ISTE 2012

Earlier this week I had the amazing opportunity to participate for the first time in the ISTE conference. By participate, I mean attend, since I was not actually presenting. As a first time ISTE attendee (newbie) I was overwhelmed with choosing which ticketed workshops to attend and with filling my planner with non-ticketed sessions throughout the day. Luckily, I had my good friend, Jennifer, at my side to navigate through the mass techies. The very first workshop was a bit of a disappointment. However, that was not due to the material or the presenter, it was because I was a novice and had chosen a workshop that was geared towards technology system administers and not classroom teachers. From that point on I was pleasantly surprised to see that the workshops I had chosen where right up my alley. I learned a ton and gained way more resources then I will be able to use. I quickly realized that I need to pick a few key areas to dial in on and implement next year. Therefore, I  plan to implement QR codes and Science and Math inquiry using technology throughout my projects and curriculum. I also hope to expose my students to SketchUp, info graphics, and many more cool tools. My wheels are certainly spinning while I try to organize all the ideas and resources I have attained. I hope to post all the notes I took shortly, but until then, I want to leave my final thoughts about ISTE 2012. First, I was so impressed with all the presenters that I was lucky enough to see. I am sadden that I was able to attend a small fraction of the workshops offered. I also wish the free ticketed workshops were not limited to one a day. On top of that, each free ticketed session was limited to one hour when they clearly had three hours of material to cover. (The conference certainly makes money off the paid sessions and Exhibition floor.) On the flip side, I loved meandering through the Student Showcase and Poster sessions. The students were inspiring and such a true representation of what PBL and authentic teaching/learning can do. My goal is to have my own students presenting at ISTE in the years to come! Stay tuned for my notes.

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