My brain is extremely full, but in a good kind of way. After attending SLATE (School Leaders Advancing Technology in Education) this week, I have many ideas of things I would like to do. Narrowing them down and seeing which ideas are actually the most logical to work on will take awhile. It is fun to meet and talk with so many people that are excited about teaching in innovative ways. I’m a bit overwhelmed, but am enjoying thinking about and imagining the learning that could happen in our classrooms because we went to this conference. These kinds of events are meant to be transformative and I hope that this truly will be for me and the others from our school district that attended.
We had keynote speakers that talked to us about the big picture. We are educating our students in a rapidly changing world and we need to prepare them for a job market that has also changed. They will need the skills of collaboration, critical thinking, creativity, and communication along with content knowledge. We have a big job ahead of us.
I was able to see nice examples of digital student portfolios using collaborative wikis with teachers from the Kiel Area School District. That got me thinking about how digital portfolios could be used in our own school, but also about how it may help my own teenager as she moves towards job and college applications.
I was fortunate enough to be in a session with Tammy Lind @taml17 learning how to use mobile devices to share student work. I already had Evernote on our iPads, but had not considered the many amazing uses of that app. I took advantage of it throughout the rest of the conference.
The next session I was able to attend was the iPad App Shootout and wow - they (Marion University instructors) had some amazing apps to share. The most awe-inspiring one was the Tour Wrist and the 123 Sculpt was way cool. There were too many to mention here, but they supplied a list of favorites.
My final session was with a high school French teacher, Cecilia Schoultz @profhutch who is a technology leader in her school. She gave us many excellent suggestions for encouraging technology use in our schools. Her presentation was fantastic and her information may be found here.
Our closing keynote speaker also gave us a lot to think about. Things are definitely changing and we will have to take advantage of those changes and move forward. We will create our future as a district.
Another big benefit of this trip was getting to spend a lot of time eating, shopping and relaxing with my fellow LMC directors and talking technology AND books. I am glad I was a part of this, but am also very glad to be back in my very own living room with holiday lights and my dog curled up in my lap as I get ready to do a little reading. Good-night.