What a fun way to end the week… a Day of Discovery in beautiful Dallas, Texas! What is a Day of Discovery? Well for those of you who have never been, a Day of Discovery is an amazing opportunity to network with educators around you area while learning new and exciting tools for technology use in the classroom.
Well, this day started of right! An introduction from the Region 10 head of Instructional Technology Craig Gray proved to be quite humorous and led right into introductions from Justin Karkow and Jenn Dorman. Well, since the last two came from the other side of the country, we decided to welcome them in great Texas style by giving Justin a 10 gallon hat and a bandanna to boot. Although the introduction was fun and light-hearted, it quickly led to the meat of why we all came, the learning!
Break out sessions began with an exciting in depth look at all of the amazing pieces available in Discovery Streaming. With Linda Rush at the helm, we learned about all of the amazing opportunities at our fingertips. A peek into the video, audio, activities, assignments, quizzes and more, quickly allowed us to see the breadth and depth of opportunities. The Builders Tools is such an exciting way to incorporate hands on activities for the kids to complete at their own pace in the classroom and/or at home.
The next fun piece that she showed us was Glogster EDU. Discovery actually gave away one free year of Glogster Pro courtesy of Glogster during Teacher Appreciation Week this year. If you didn’t get in on that give-away, you can still get the free version that is available at Glogster.com, just make sure to click on the edu tab at the top.
A little lunch from Jason’s Deli and a great overview of Discovery Student Adventures got us ramped up to visit the world. The teachers were all buzzing with how they could come up with five students to go with them. We even had a few amongst us who had been on the trips and experienced the world.
After lunch we had the opportunity to learn about Digital story telling and photo editing with Hank Caruso. He had some great examples of the different age groups doing photo story. He showed us Crazy Talk and how he used it with the teachers in his school to reward acts of kindness. He then gave us the opportunity to create something ourselves.
Our third presentation was a section called Oh The Humanities by Jenn Dorman. This session proved to be just as enlightening as the rest of the day. Since there were more activities than there was time to view them, the session from Justin Karkow was the one left out. I am certain that it was well worthwhile though because the eruptions of laughter in that room continued from the time it started to the time it ended. Justin tends to bring in an element of humor like no other.
In all, the day was a great success. We met many new friends and our learning network doubled in size. With 200 people in attendance, we were sure to make new friends. I left with the knowledge that Discovery’s new iPad app will be released next week and with a new found desire to experience a Discovery Student Adventure with the kids from my district. I hope that next time you get the opportunity to attend one of Discovery’s day long conferences, you will jump at the chance. You will walk away with a full brain and a huge smile on your face… ready to reinvent the way you teach in your classroom.