Sunday, November 6, 2011

#AuthorSpeak 3 Day Recap

I've had a couple of days to think about my three days at Authorspeak and I have to say it was a great time. Before I go into the overall feel of #Authorspeak, I need to recap my last half of the day on Thursday.

The Connected Educator by Sheryl Nussbaum Beach and Lani Ritter Hall

I had a blast at this session. Sheryl is a very passionate person and I could see that she sees the importance of teachers integrating technology into the classroom and that the Connected Educator is something every teacher should strive to be if they are going to meet the students where they are.

One of my favorite parts of this session was when Lani Skyped into the session to talk about her work on the book. What came out of that conversation was that this book never touched paper before it was printed. Their collaboration took place using Google Docs and was submitted online when complete. These two educators were modeling what a collaborative and connected educator looks like, and it looked great.

There are so many great tools out there that allow educators to connect and share. I've been lucky to have made some great connections over the past couple of years that has allowed me to grow as an educator. My Romeo and Juliet project would have been impossible a few years ago if it were not for the collaborative tools available today.

I love the idea of Connected Educators working hand in hand to great a world wide learning environment for students and teachers. The more we can connect students and teachers to ideas from all over the world, the better off the world will be in the long run. I would recommend picking up Sheryl and Lani's book, The Connected Educator, and sharing it with your friends.

The conference closed with some prizes and recognition of teachers and other educators that are making a difference in their schools. I love prizes, but I love recognizing educators even more. These were people that were nominated by their peers and created a video showing why they were so valuable to them. As a teacher, I do not do the stuff I do in my district or with my students to be recognized, but when it happens, it is a very nice feeling.

I was to sure what to expect heading to AuthorSpeak. A conference where authors talk about their books could seem like an endless infomercial, but it was the exact opposite. I was able to see some educators talk about learning. There were great conversations before and after sessions that I would never be able to have outside of this conference. While I might not have been in total agreement with every author in every session, my thinking was challenged. I like to be challenged and this conference offered that for me.

I was able to hangout with some great friends and talk education, it just educational technology. Best practices were discussed and new ideas were shared. Connections were made and learning took place. I feel like I picked up a few new friends along the way as well. I was very happy to go to AuthorSpeak and want to fit it into my schedule. I hope to see many of you at AuthorSpeak2012 October 30 - November 1.

Did you attend in person or virtually? Leave me your thoughts here.

- @TheNerdyTeacher

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