What an inspirational day.
It began with a call to action from the panel of amazing female edtech leaders at Paying It Forward: Leveraging Female Voices in EdTech. I was so impressed by the stories and strength of the five panelists (Ellen Bialo, Julie Evans, Margaret Roth, Kari Stubbs, and Dr. Mila Fuller). Then I was blown away again by the voices (both aloud and through Twitter) of the women in attendance. Getting young women engaged in STEM fields and leadership will be a big task, but I have hope after witnessing the power of the women I met today.
That session was followed with Carl Hooker's entertaining and thought provoking session Raised by Siri: A Course in Digital Parenting. Carl did a fantastic job of balancing serious discussions about the challenges facing parents and educators as we raise our digital native kids with the humor that is so necessary in facing those challenges.
After a couple hours of fun and games in the Expo Hall, I wasn't sure how useful Hacking Keynote with Adam Bellow and Dean Shareski would be. But I thoroughly enjoyed the chance to explore aspects of Keynote I had no idea existed. I can't wait to try them out. And my day was satisfactorily wrapped up with a session on Power Up PD: Top 10 Workshops for 1:1 by Diana Neebe and Jennifer Roberts.
Such a variety of sessions, but patterns emerged that I hope to see continue over the next two days.
1) The quality of presentations has been stellar. They were creative, inspirational, challenging, and fruitful.
2) The positive energy of my fellow edtech colleagues is palpable and thrilling. I feel so lucky to be a part of this field and a part of this experience.
Looking forward to participating in that palpable energy as a presenter tomorrow!
One year ago, I prepared to attend the annual International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) conference for the first time. Registration? Check. Hotel and plane reservations? Check. Bags packed and tech gear stashed? Check.
I thought I was prepared. I mean, it's just a conference, right? You've seen one, you've seen them all. (Yes, ISTE veterans, go ahead and giggle. Laughter is good for the soul.)
Wow, was I wrong. What I experienced at ISTE2014 injected me with a dose of inspiration and energy that lasted almost the entire school year. Because of the amazing people and ideas I encountered at ISTE2014, I started this website, developed new connections on Twitter, became a Pinterest nut, advocated for more time and resources to serve my colleagues as an instructional tech coach, and drummed up the nerve to get more involved in local conferences and tech organizations.
Did everything go as I hoped? Certainly not. In fact, for the past two months I've been so inundated with the daily chaos of completing a school year that my Twitter and Pinterest accounts have cobwebs and this blog had almost forgotten I existed.
"Finding the Right Balance in Tech Use" (Tormala), Edutopia, April 10, 2018.
"Keynote is just a slide creator...isn't it?" (Tormala) EdTechTeam, Jan 2018.
"Getting Girls into STEM: The Power of Blended (and All-Female) Instruction". (Tormala) EdSurge, March 21, 2017.
"Confronting the Abominable Snow Day". (Gilbert & Tormala) Edutopia, Feb. 2017.
"Video Interviews with iPads: The Power of Mobile Technology". (Tormala) EdTechTeam, Jan 2017.
"Discomfort, Growth, and Innovation." (Tormala) Edutopia, Oct. 2016.
"5 Epiphanies on Learning in a 1:1 iPad Classroom." (Tormala) Edutopia, July 2014.