I'm done! I'm done! I'm done! Two presentations ... presented. Lots of others attended.
I would give myself ... a B. Maybe a B+. That's decent for my first try at a state level, isn't it? Some things went really well. I do know my content. Some things ... not as well. I get nervous and talk too fast. Anyway. Enough of me rambling. On to cool stuff I learned. Or was reminded off. Had actually heard about a lot of it at one time or another but in an information overloaded world it's easy to forget. Good to be among like minded people. ;]
PS Because I was driving back and forth I never stayed past 4.
Added a pic to make it a bit more interesting. Go here for this pic if the embed code doesn't work. Yay for people who CC their work!
Google Apps. COME ON, DISTRICT. Let's get moving on it! Or, I should be more patient. I know it's in the works. I'm sure there's a lot behind the scenes I don't even know about. Would be so exciting, though. I do what I can with sharing Google Docs and using Google Forms. Need to try harder and not get impatient (or back off!) when others don't see the use right off. The kids WILL NEED this "work from the cloud" ability. It's not on any standardized test. Other than the one called life.
Tammy's Favorite Technology Tips. I'd miss the kids. And I'd go nuts with all that traveling and having to talk to so many big groups. And ... there's a lot more to her job. But that is a fun side part. Just talking about COOL STUFF. Takeaway #1: I MUST LEARN EVERNOTE. I've had an account for a while but have not even by a long shot ... and I do mean LONG SHOT ... am I using it to it's full capability. And considering how terrible I am at keeping "stuff" where I can find it again (I know. How embarrassing. A disorganized information professional) this could be a great lifesaver. Copy Paste Character looks like fun! I'd heard about Class Dojo on a couple blogs but hadn't seen it until she showed it to us. It actually looks ... I mean, I'm not sure about the "negative points" being shown to everyone. But the positive feedback is awesome.
Tech Integration with Dr. Seuss. This presenter was doing great things with her special ed students. They were on video interviewing others about their favorite books. They made some great ppt slides. Still thinking through how I might use some of her ideas. When I figure out why I keep getting errors every time I try to download handouts from the TCEA website I'll come back and link to her stuff!
QRazy about QR Codes. SO COOL. They offered some great ideas on how to use QR codes for class instruction ... sorting activities, self checking vocab, etc. I SO WISH we had more than 3 iTouches that had cameras. Will start with what we have, though! (PS Must also check ... YouTube is often blocked on the iTouches ... but what about linking to book trailers?) Go here and scroll down to the bottom for the info on their presentation (and of course look around at their other stuff ... I've seen them present several times and own a couple of the Print, Cut, and Fold books. AWESOME! Actually, they ran the next presentation I attended as well. So ... explore that Digital Goonies site!
Then I went to the Sweet 16 Digital Projects presentation. Go to LiveBinders and search AUTHORS for ebenno. Among other things she showed us a couple of cute music videos her kids had made using music from Discovery Ed. I usually am not a big fan of kid music ... but wow. Way to learn the difference between living and non-living. She also talked about a couple avatar creators I'd never seen. And some nice digital storytelling ideas.
Then I went to a presentation on Library Design ... how to remove obstacles to learning and collaborating and finding information for students and staff. This one I also need to think about some more. I'm sure more could be done in our school space. I let the hallway space (ie we don't have walls at all in our library ... basically in the middle of a a major traffic hallway where it's not unusual to have 12 classes walk through on their way to lunch. Or a poor little one who's not feeling well on his way to the nurse. Or an upset little one crying because mom/dad are enrolling brothers or sisters. Or classes waiting in line for the bathroom in the biography section. Or waiting to be picked up from lunch in the 590-640 section. I have to bloom where I'm planted, right? The kids deserve the best I can give them. BUT I'M NOT SURE WHAT TO DO! Constantly stopping lessons to ask distractions in the hallway to move along doesn't work. Raising my voice just to be heard over the din doesn't work. Bells don't work. Ignoring it doesn't work. If I can barely keep my concentration straight ... what is it like for a 3rd grader?
Research Made Fun. Imagine my surprise to not hear the word library or librarian spoken once. I don't mean to disparage it too much. This teacher and ed tech person really did a pretty decent job with their kids. I just felt badly that I think it could have been EVEN BETTER. Want to try some of the backchanneling they did. Must see if Primary Pad is available through our filter. Might be fun to try it along with a class in a different building. Take the collaboration outside of the school even. Or Primary Wall.
75 Creative and Useful Imaging Websites. WOW. He works with HS kids but said a lot of these could be used with younger students and he's right. SO MUCH FUN! Will post more on specifics as I use them with students.
Then here's another set of LiveBinders worth checking out. Go here for a list. I only went to one of their sessions but my friend went to another. Pretty good stuff! More people to follow. I enjoyed the discussion among the other attendees as well. Twitter was mentioned a lot. Made me realize I need to "talk" to more people there instead of just listen. Contribute and not just consume. Might be worth a blog post or a new blog page ... Twitter for Beginners, Library Style. Some people don't know about #mglitchat or #yalitchat or #titletalk or #tlchat or #edchat. COOL STUFF. Plus how Twitter incorporates with Flipboard or Hootsuite or Tweetdeck.