ISTE 2012 is now 14 days away — DEN Day Of Discovery’s are even sooner –
so I thought it might be appropriate to repost this post originally written in 2008.
I invite you to take the Conference Challenge……….(and I will be taking it as well)
1. Do not equate Name Recognition with Greatness. Take the time to get to know the “knowns” — they are approachable, they are human beings, and they have life beyond tech. Don’t assume because their name is “KNOWN” that they are unapproachable. Be brave — get to know them!
2. Name drop NEW NAMES. Go to a session presented by someone you have never heard and LISTEN and then blog, wiki, or skype about it. Share what you learned. Expand their session by being town crier and share NEW NAMES!!
3. Step back and don’t critique — but learn. Some of us (I will admit I am one) have become a conference snob and if you don’t wow me in 5 minutes, I move on…..and that is a fault. Some people need momentum to get going. Races are not always won in the first 10 minutes — but in the endurance to finish…..so take the time to give someone a break and push past the (very hard) first 5 minutes of the speaker connecting with their audience……and then blog what you learned.
4. Check out the poster sessions. As I have said, and will say again, these areas are overlooked — and often are the most exciting. Take the time to walk through and talk with the presenters. This is a wonderful time for the personal contact, the individual questions, more…….and then blog about what you learned.
5. Try something different. Go ahead and go out to eat with your “favorite friends” but invite someone new to the conversation. At CUE, our small dinner group of 4 ended up being 13 — and it was great to get to know new people — it was great talking with old friends too — it just became better because new voices were added.
6. Take some time to just walk away. Excuse yourself from the conversation, eliminate all outside influences, and just re-evaluate what is happening with you.
7. Walk the exhibit hall, find something WORTH sharing, and then blog about it. What’s the newest toy that is not just a gadget but is going to bring change to your classroom — let us know. What new software will make things easier for the office staff — let us know!!
8. Smooz Smooz Smooz!! Take the time to visit the BIG BOOTHS and introduce yourself and become a KNOWN yourself. I always stop by Inspiration, Google, DEN, Tech4Learning, Atomic Learning, etc….just to say hi and reintroduce. After enough “Hi’s”, you are remembered……and they become a great resource when you just might need a door prize, to test a new software, or a connection for future reference.
9. Share with us what is HAPPENING and not just being talked about. Let us know names of teachers that are creating incredible and exceptional opportunities with their students and let us know HOW they are doing it.
10. Don’t make it just “ANOTHER” tech conference………..look for the “OHWOW” moments and share them. Be an “OH WOW” moment and stop by “the Bloggers Cafe”, or “Necc Unplugged”, or “Edublogger Con” or whatever venue there is for conversation and SHARE YOUR STORY TOO!!!
Hmmmm — any other ideas??
Always appreciate your contributions!