Jul 28

What a great way to begin summer “vacation”!  Connecting, collaborating, chilling, charging up for September:

A. In June I attended the ISTE conference in Philadelphia, PA (https://www.isteconference.org/2011/).

I shared out several items and takeaways from my days in Philly on my other blog.

Please allow me to share the links here if you are interested.

  • The first day was filled with Kickoffs and Explorations

http://jeannineshields.blogspot.com/2011/06/iste11-day-one-recap.html.

  • The second day was filled with TPACK, exhibits, ISTELearning, and collaborations. I had the pleasure of attending the SIGML session. What a great share-a-thon.

http://jeannineshields.blogspot.com/2011/06/iste11-day-two-recap.html

  • The third day was filled with vendor visits, social gatherings, and Twitter fun.

http://jeannineshields.blogspot.com/2011/06/iste11-day-three-recap.html

Spent a few days visiting Philadelphia afterwards with a friend. Together the wheels turned and a few school projects for next year emerged. Students should be given an opportunity to explore their historical backyards. New Rochelle’s has an amazing history. I plan on tapping into that next year with students. And yay!!! Discovery Streaming has much to offer that connects to these explorations.

B. In July, I had the distinct pleasure of attending the Discovery Educator Network Summer Institute. It was held in beautiful San Diego, CA. My suitemates were wonderful Paula Naugle, Nancy Amling and Tonya Wilson. How lucky can a girl get! Then all the DEN friends that stopped by for visits. What an amazing group of individuals assembled. I mentioned on someone’s Facebook page this week. The DEN isn’t just about a group of people getting together. It is the right group of people gathering. We learned so much from each other informally via twitter, late night discussions, and over a cup of coffee. Oh right and there were excellent scheduled professional development opportunities as well. Danny Forster, Hall Davidson, and Steve Hargadon challenged us each to be exemplary educators looking at things from new angles, new lenses, and from new perspectives.

Here are my blog recaps from the event:

  • Day one was travel and a special appearance from Danny Forster:

http://jeannineshields.blogspot.com/2011/07/densi-update.html

  • Day two was a trip to Sea World to enhance and enlarge our PLNs:

http://jeannineshields.blogspot.com/2011/07/densi-update.html

  • Day three was professional development hyperdrive and some social experiments:

http://jeannineshields.blogspot.com/2011/07/densi-update-day-3.html

  • Day four was an amazing day for me. I had my first successful geocache. Thanks again Tally!

http://jeannineshields.blogspot.com/2011/07/densi-update-day-4.html

Steve Hargadon helped me to find my edtech voice again. During the unconference I learned some great interactive techniques from Jennifer Wagner. I learned that students and teachers next year can create epub books online. The night was capped off with a fabulous DEN beach themed party.

It was so hard to leave all of our old friends and new found friends. The constant supportive and informative tweets came to an end. Oh but wait, it’s twitter! And we are still connected! The conversation continues. Suddenly I have many new “friends” on Facebook too. Oh so the party doesn’t have to end! Through DEN colleagues I have stumbled upon the weekly education twitter chats. I now plan to tune in for #elemchat and #tichat on a regular basis. My DEN friends have started #4thchat and #2ndchat. Definitely hope to find time to join their conversations too some evenings.

C. After all the great experiences in just two months I am energized and ready to start school anew in September (okay not just yet… but when September is here I will be excited to implement what I have learned.)  I have already emailed my principal with a few ideas for the coming school year.  So far he likes the ideas that I have shared.