Last year at FETC, Implementation, Karen and I announced a unique contest to promote the use of unitedstreaming in Florida. The Florida DEN member that logged into unitedstreaming the most won a Gigabyte USB drive. That prize went to Debbie Bohanan of Osceola. This was to support the use of unitedstreaming with Implementation. Then we gave away a prize for to the DEN Members and their Districts that reported the most events on average. This contest supported our goals of reporting events (must have worked, I’m reporting a lot for North Florida!) and it also supported the use of unitedstreaming. If events are going on, then the use of unitedstreaming is going to increase. Virginia Richard of Polk County won first place and received a Digital Camera. Cheryl Woolwine won second place, winning a Gig USB drive. The district? Putnam County! The combined efforts of their DEN members, and their small size gave them a HIGH percentage of events. Their prize? A complete Professional Development Package from Discovery.
So today, 7 months after announcing the winner, we finally were able to host the event! WHAT A DAY! After a warm welcome from 75 Putnam teachers, Karen opened up with her famous Germy Donut Lesson. Did I mention we served them donuts for breakfast? Lance Rougeux, DEN Director, joined us to do the official opening segment on Differentiated Learning and wowed us all with some basic Discovery trivia. He warmed everyone up, giving out prizes and highlighting the various sessions to come. If you have ever seen Lance present, then you know it’s full energy and down to Earth, with a touch of Steelers.
Now it was a great treat to have Lance and Karen there, but it got even better. The infamous Steve Dembo came in (at 3 AM in the morning!) to do a session on podcasting. For those of you who are having a memory lapse or are new to DEN, Steve is our online Community Manager, one of the main authors of the National DEN blog and the author of Teach42. He’s also a former Kindergarten teacher, which means he is full of energy and creativity and always fun to have around. He’s also going to be a new father soon. (insert the ahhhhhhs)
The other superstar? Implementation’s Brian Degenhart! This was thrilling because Brian has not yet been to a DEN event – this was his first! YEAH! What’s Implementation? The Implementation Team is the heart of unitedstreaming, helping us with unitedstreaming needs and issues, and to help us smoothly integrate unitedstreaming into our school systems. I have no idea what I would do without Matt Monjan, Brian Degenhart, Craig Halper and Christine. With that in mind, it’s hard for them to come join us in person at events. Their events are often done via webex. They know your name, they know your voices, but they often don’t get to put a face with those names and voices. So thank you Implementation for supporting us on this great day of Discovery and sending Brian to Putnam County.
So with Steve doing podcasting, Brian doing the Builders, that left Karen to do PowerPoint and me to do Photo Story. We repeated the classes after a fantastic Lunch and Learn with Joanne Hayes of Learning Adds Up. Great program, very similar to other fund raising programs like Target and the soup labels. Only difference is not only can your school earn money, the school gets an account to use in the media center for student research and tutorial needs, and the students are buying Cosmeo instead of non-educational items.
The true Super Stars though of the day was Putnam County. A special thanks to Marsha Cruce, Cheryl Woolwine, Gary, Stephen, and George for setting up the technology for the day. Thank you to Shelley Thompson for the decorations and to Mellon Elementary for hosting the event. Thanks to Sandra Black for the great recommendation on the caterer (Seasons: 1-877-4mylunch). Also, I’m not sure who took the left overs to the Food Kitchen, but thank you! And to the teachers, for just making a great professional day even better. Your enthusiasm and sense of humor made the sessions even better!
Thanks again to all who made our Harvest a very rich bounty!