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In Response to EdTechTalk

I “attended” an EdTechTalk discussion this evening. The topic was Teachers Teaching Teachers. We got off to a late start because of regular parent/teacher-type events. I found it so amazing to hear one man say that he watched his son’s ball game in the South Bronx. Well, the first amazing fact is that we are living under a layer of ice and to think of playing ball right now is outrageous! (Who knows, maybe it was an indoor game – yes, that makes me feel much better!). The second amazing fact is that I was listening to a guy from the Bronx – in my life, I only interact with people from the Bronx in the movies. There was also someone from Sacramento, Louisiana, and Boston among other locales. The Canadians were warmly welcomed to the group as we introduced ourselves.
There was a man who led the discussion – I think his name was Paul. I’m not sure because I could only hear his voice. Susan was another leader and she wrote greetings and requested introductions from everyone who entered the room.
I noted that issues in education are not isolated to certain schools, school divisions, or even countries. There are a number of differences between the educational systems in Canada and the States, and yet the discussions revolved around getting kids engaged and how to go about this by using technology.
Paul posed an open-ended question which I misinterpreted. I typed a response and then realized I was off topic. He asked what the top five habits you would hope to instill in your students include. After I typed my response as wishing my students to be polite and show respect, I realized that he was pushing for writing habits. Oops! Susan then sent me a message that asked me to Skype. I have to admit that I became a chicken. I don’t know how to Skype and I was scared to try it out so I quickly responded that I didn’t have Skype. Which really isn’t a lie because I don’t really know if I have access or not. But to be honest, I was really hoping I didn’t have it!

I found a new term I need to investigate – Sprout.  From what I understand from the conversation, it’s a template for students (and teachers) to create websites.  It sounds like something I might like to check out.

I found the panel and the guests to be dedicated educators.  They were very welcoming and respectful to the new “lurkers”.  I can’t see myself dedicating my free time every week to attend these sessions but I might tag the calendarand join in the chat rooms which show some promise to my interests.  Most of the issues discussed this evening related more to older students and although an educational experience for me, I felt a bit out of place when people were talking about encouraging students to develop “I questions” while I hope for a sentence each day beginning with a capital and ending with some form of punctuation.  I see a topic tomorrow about 21st Century Learning but I’m not sure how I could manage this at 11am while I’m supposed to be teaching.  Maybe I need to find a tool that allows me to multi-task by cloning myself.  (another possible final project?)

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2 Comments»

  Alec Couros wrote @

Thanks for sharing your experience Kim. Certainly, these seminars would not be for everyone, every week. But I think, as you say, if you use the calendar, you may be able to find specific session useful or interesting to you.

I will be talking about ETT in class this week.

  megan gerwing wrote @

It is intersting how technology makes the world a smaller place. It sounds as if you really made some connections during EdTech Talk. Perhaps my experience would have been more meaningful if I had participated in the chat room more. I just messaged people that I knew.

P.S. Thanks Kim for one of your previous post about taking you daughter out to the island. You motivated me to get outside with my little guy. We went sledding and it was the most fun I have had in ages.


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