Today, I was able to attend sessions focused on competency-based professional learning with the integration of micro-credentials. I was able to hear how a school district in Houston, Texas was able to roll-out meaningful and personalized professional development for their teachers. You can find the slides for the presentation here.
I was also able to attend a session on badges and their use with students in Aurora Public Schools. While there was a great deal of information in the session (you can find everything from the session here), but what really stuck with me was the way Aurora Public Schools trusted teachers to use their professional judgement when it came to awarding badges. I believe this level of trust should permeate more aspects of the teacher profession in order empower teachers to take ownership of their work and refine their craft.
The conference ended with a beautiful Keynote from Michelle Cordy, which highlighted her work with her amazing students. Nothing is more heartwarming than watching a teacher gush about her students. Her remarks elevated what teaching is truly all about - relationships with students that inspire lifelong learning.
How was your #ISTE2016 experience? What were your key takeaways? Please share them in the comments below!
Today started with a powerful, inspiring Keynote from Ruha Benjamin who describes herself as a sociologist of science|tech|medicine|race|gender. One of the big things I have been internally grappling with this week is the technology inequity that current exists between students of different groups including socio-economic status, race, and gender. It was incredibly powerful to hear a Keynote that passionately articulated my Like Benjamin shared in her Keynote, it is more than just access. It is the coding in the system that has currently put students of minority backgrounds at a severe disadvantage. Benjamin calls for educators to grow students filled with empathy and love for humankind. It would be impossible to capture just how truly powerful this Keynote was, so I will make sure I post it here when ISTE releases the recording. Meanwhile, here is a link to a Twitter story that was created by a fellow ISTE participant. I have also included a TEDx talk from Benjamin below that discusses some similar topics.
I then had my first encounter with not getting into a session. I wanted to attend the session titled Fear the Sitting Dead: Bringing PD Back to Life. This is where the social media and networking came in handy. While attending a session on teaching online courses, I also followed #sitdeadiste2016 to see what was going on in the other room. I also used the digital backpack on the ISTE website to find the presentation for a third session that I was interested in at the same time. I was able to add all of the links to my session notes here. Additionally, I was able to connect to a new friend who was able to attend the session. She graciously allowed me to take pictures of her notes so I could get the main point from the session.
After a delicious lunch with a friend and coworker, I went to a session with John Ohler, which focused on future trends in technology and how they will impact the field of education. In this session, I thought about how the field of education will likely change in the next 5 years and the ethical ramifications of these advances.
How has your ISTE experience been? What resonated with you about Benjamin's Keynote? Leave your thoughts in the comments below!
I started off the morning by attending a session on blended learning. While the information from the panel was useful, I found myself leaving with more questions than answers. I have flipped my classroom myself, with some very positive results for my students. However, the more I learn about a flipped classroom model and blended learning in general, the more I find myself feeling like this is not the last stop on the innovative education train. Providing great content videos on a playlist for students is a great start, but I think teachers are capable of so much more. You can find my session notes from this session and others here.
One of the major themes I have heard coming from both #DEPLA2016 and #ISTE2016 is the re-focus on student-teacher relationships. While many would have considered me a technology pioneer in my classroom, I believe my super-hero strength was a result of the relationships I formed with students. Perhaps a great next question for innovative educators everywhere is "How can I use this tool to form more productive relationships with my students?" It is no secret that the best part of teaching is the relationships and experiences you have with students. How do we elevate the most joyful part of the profession in a productive way that enhances student learning? I believe answering this question will be what saves the profession.
To start off the second half of my day, I walked around the EXPO hall and checked out the vendors for ISTE. It's amazing to see how many companies bring out their best for a large event like this. The vendor I was most excited about was Kyte, a company that strives to provide online professional development materials for educators focused on technology.
Timeline - https://timeline.knightlab.com/
Beth Moss Google Slam - https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1HMLg5WFWg4GXLvXekptO-UJzuJgX1cV9qyHr0y-26rQ/edit?usp=drive_web
Straight Outta YouTube
https://docs.google.com/presentation/d/1oNst6onZ5wvvAXBN5XgMxkZ8DRiqsuQDIzqKskMALec/edit#slide=id.pRepost for Instagram - https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/repost-for-instagram/id570315854?mt=8
Trello - https://trello.com/
What did you learn at ISTE today? Please feel free to share in the comments below!
It's the end of day one at my first ISTE conference. It's been incredible to experience such a large conference in my home town. I started the day with a seemless registration experience, having plenty of time to walk around the conference center before the first session I attended.
To warm up, I attended a Gizmos and Gadgets session, nerding out on both education and non-education related technology. I found myself totally geeking out about some exciting tech. I immediately put Game of Phones, the Amazon Echo, the Amazon Dash Button and the Amazon Dashwand on my wish list.
Next, I got to connect with some of my peeps with the Colorado Educator Network along with some fellow DPS employees. Being a local conference, it's great to see so many familiar faces. This is incredibly helpful for an introvert like myself.
This leads to the last main event of the evening - the Keynote from Dr. Michio Kaku. While I agreed with many of the sentiments expressed in the presentation, I found myself ultimately disappointed. The overall message was fantastic - dreaming of a new world with incredible technology in the areas of healthcare, education and communication. It is absolutely astounding what advances we are likely to make in the next 50 years. This vision was impressive and inspiring. However, while visuals are not everything in a presentation, I was surprised by the large amount of text on the slides along with some low-resolution images. I felt like it detracted from the overall message. More importantly, I found myself waiting for a call-to-action and a more explicit connection to the field of education. Many references were made in the context of the medical field, but I found myself wanting to know how we could expect education to change over the next 50 years.
Next week, I am excited to attend my first ISTE conference! In order to prepare for this event, I attended a session at #DEPLA2016 with the lovely Jessica Raleigh and Ben Wilkoff. In this session, Jessica and Ben provide a list of resources for attendees, along with tips for navigating such a large conference in a way that meets your learning needs. You can find the document here. Check it out - it's pretty amazing.
This week, I had the wonderful opportunity to attend #DEPLA2016. I have always found this even to be incredibly inspiring. I always meet new educators that inspire me and teach me new things about being an educator and about being human. I had many great conversations about new technology, being a teacher, what it's like to transition out of the classroom, and how to use Chrome to make life easier. You can find my resources for my session, Chrome: One Browser to Rule Them All, at sites.google.com/a/dpsk12.net/chrome/.
The biggest highlight, was the Student Panel Keynote. It is always incredibly inspiring to hear student voices and listen to them for words of wisdom and grace. Two of the students on the panel were my students from Abraham Lincoln High School - both first-generation high school graduates with college plans. It was incredible to hear them speak their truth to a room filled with educators. This was an incredibly powerful experience for everyone in the room. While I could try to describe the amazingly insightful statements from the students, it is something you should just see for yourself. Video of the Keynote can be found at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-5aX5FXxKnAwww.youtube.com/watch?v=-5aX5FXxKnA.
Below are some of my Twitter highlights from the event, mostly focused on the student Keynote.
Overall, the event focused on looking at students as people, to personalize learning. Teachers have long understood the importance to strong relationships with students, and this event elevated this core value. Amazing learning does not happen without the time and attention focused on relationships. It is important to stay true to this value as educators and this event provided a variety of opportunities to dive deeper. DEPLA is an incredible event that all educators should attend. I'm already excited for #DEPLA2017.
I'm so excited for #DEPLA 2016!!! DEPLA (Digital Educator and Personalized Learning Academy) is a wonderful summer learning opportunity for all educators taking place on June 16th and 17th. It is a great place to come and be inspired by a variety of amazing people.
This week, I have had the pleasure of collaborating with Jessica Raleigh on one of the two #DEPLA2016 Keynotes. We have each had the pleasure of knowing and inviting two high school students to share their experience as a student with teachers from around the district. We we able to meet (in person!) to discuss the format, logistics, and some thoughtful guiding questions to help students meaningfully share their stories. Below is a tweet that accurately captures how great this meeting was for each of us.
Mattea Garcia is a passionate creative educator dedicated to improving the student experience. This blog is dedicated to reflections on educational technology tools, instructional coaching, and educational equity.