Wednesday, July 22, 2009

NECC Day 4 & 5

Day 4

This was the day I presented with a couple of friends and co-workers. That was the major focus of the day and I actually didn't manage to attend any other sessions. We presented on the work we've been doing with technology at our school. We shared the various types of things students have done from first through fifth grades. It was a well attended session and we had a good time. The information from the session can be found here. We also created a delicious page with all of the links.

Being a part of this presentation was surprisingly energizing for me. It helped me to recognize all of the fun stuff we did this year that was really great. As a result, I'm feeling more excited about this year and all the possibilities.

Day 5

I debated about whether or not to head into town for the final morning of NECC (I live outside of DC so I took the metro in most days. It made for a very different conference experience, I think.) I knew I couldn't stay for the full morning because I needed to get home to my daughters but I really wanted to hear Alan November speak. I'm really glad I went because I greatly enjoyed his talk and I'm looking forward to the tweets and posts from folks at his upcoming conference.

Lisa Parisi liveblogged this session. It was called Designing Rigorous and Globally Connected Assignments. In this session, as in many others, I felt like one of the main messages was that it's not about the tools, it's about the learning, the pedagogy, all the things it has always been about. The tools are simply that, tools. However, these tools open up possibilities that didn't exist or were too difficult in the past. We can bring families into the classroom through skype. We can learn from people around the world immediately. Another message that came through here and elsewhere was that teachers have to let go of control. We can't solely own the learning anymore. I find that exciting, but I'm not sure most folks do. Most at NECC, however, certainly seem to.

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