A mashup of all things educational! From technology and social media to leadership and international education, this is where I will be reflecting and applying everything thing I learn from the web and my PLN. Join me on the adventure and add your opinion to the mix!

15 June 2013

3 ISTE13: Catalyst for Change!



In my last blog post, What makes ISTE different, I mentioned that I was going to have a meeting with past ISTE attendees at our school and have them give "feedback to feedforward" to the two #newbies I am bringing with me this year.  I expected the conversation to be engaging and interesting but it was so much more!  It was such an inspiring moment to hear these three teachers explain how going to ISTE has actually CHANGED the type of teacher that they are!  What a powerful statement for a conference!

All three mentioned that going to the ISTE conference helped them realise the following 3 essential points:
  • They are not alone- they all arrived at ISTE with different levels of technical knowledge but talking and sharing at the conference helped them realise that EVERYONE starts as a beginner but EVERYONE can move forward in embedding technology thoughtfully
  • There is a worldwide shared vision for educational technology- All three mentioned that ISTE helped them realise that the rest of the world is engaging in and using technology to develop student skills and concepts in a depth that they hadn't realised.  Seeing those examples helped them realise what is possible for our school.
  • That personal learning is necessary- Two of the three teachers hadn't used twitter before the confrence but through the discussions and examples provided (and a little from me pointing out some of my favorite #edtech "rock stars"!) they realised how powerful a PLN can be.  After the conference all three teachers have become active members of the #edtech and #edchat communities on twitter.  They all mentioned that ISTE inspired them to continue reading and engaging in learning as part of their personal professional development.  
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Here are some inspiring quotes from the conversation:
Maca Grade 3 homeroom teacher:
  •  "After the conference I realised that I needed to learn more and read more.... I didn't realise that the learning went way over the walls of the school"
  • "ISTE gave me motivation to do more in my classroom."
Tania Technology Integration Specialist Elementary School:
  • "It helped me build up my vision of what I wanted [for ed tech] in our school... Without ISTE, I don't think I would have seen this [ed tech] vision so clearly... You get to see the big picture"
  • "Meeting other people who "get" what we do makes me feel like I'm not alone... like I belong to this global community of "crazy" technology people!  Whenever I have a problem I know there is someone out there that can help me solve the problem."
Cristina Middle School English Teacher:
  • "Before I thought technology was something social but not for learning but after ISTE I realised that everything that is out there in the web can be used as an educational tool."
  • "That sharing is essential.  Everyone at ISTE was so open to share and help others learn and now I do that here."
And from the conversation, they came to a clear consensus on three important recommendations for our #newbies before they go to the conference:  
  • Download Evernote:  it is essential to record sessions to listen to them later
  • Download ISTE app: you need to make sure you have a plan b, plan c, and plan d for each day!
  • Join Twitter: have an account so you can follow others and #iste13 
It was a great conversation and it ended with all three of the past attendees saying "I'm jealous! Is there a way that we can go this year too?"  Powerful professional development for sure!

Looking forward to your thoughts!
Jessica :)

Photo Source: Liberty Bell Jessica Allen, Google Cristina Alvayay, Collage Photovisi

3 comments:

Macarena Rojas said...

Thanks to you Jessica! you have been an inspiration for us!
Maca

Anonymous said...

Thank you!! it was a great conversation, just what I needed to give me the final push for the ISTE!

Jessica Allen said...

So great you to are finding our work at the ISTE conference inspiring! It's been great sharing the experience with both of you! :)

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