A Scoop of Technology, Vol. 3

EdTech News and Events as Compiled by @TxTechCoach

A Call to Awesomeness

Every year the SBISD EdTech department hosts a winter conference. It has taken on many forms. In the early days of ActivBoards it was all about the board and things you could do with the board, but it has morphed into many other things through the years.

This year it is the InnovateEDU Summit. It sounds spectacular and the organizers have been working their fannies off--I encourage you to go, I really do. I love conferences and the energy they can build in us. But I can't help but feel like they have spent a lot of time and energy and creativity for something that no one is really interested in.

There are lots of reasons why, we humans are awesome with our excuses. But the fact is that the organizers have had a hard time getting presenters and are struggling to get participants. This will be a big, flashy conference with lots of amazing things happening, and very few will witness it.

I went to CAST week before last. I'm a technology coach, but I jumped at the chance to see great science teachers showcasing their talents, and there was a spot available because no one would go. Again, I'm sure there are many reasons, but the sad fact is that I was surrounded by people who fought for the chance to go, and we couldn't drum up even one more teacher to keep the one going company. I get to go to the Model Schools conference, because there was an extra teacher spot open. I'm thrilled because I was super bummed I wasn't going to get to go, but sad at the same time because why wouldn't a teacher want to go?

I know that we have a lot of staff development, and most of the time we loathe it. I don't see conferences like these as just your run of the mill staff development. Sometimes I leave a mandatory staff development feeling energized, but nothing like I do when I leave a conference. I come back to work energized and ready to change the world. I come back feeling AWESOME and feeling like education is AWESOME and students and life in general are AWESOME. I come back brimming with ideas and enthusiasm and renewed vigor,

I'd like to invite you to feel that way. To feel and be AWESOME. Start with the winter technology conference--it will be full of practical ideas that you can use today. Then come with me to edcamp Houston in April, and to edcamp Spring Branch in August. Along the way pick up a webinar or another kind of conference for something you are passionate about. Try something new. Learn something new. I bet you'll love it!