I recently returned from the NECC conference in Washinton D.C. , and I was pleasantly surprised at the array of choices for technology coordinators, teachers, and administrators. There were simply too many seminars to enjoy, learn from, and sample, and I am glad that I used the NECC planner as my guide. It kept me on track and focused as it is easy to get distracted with all the wonderful choices. As for my reflections, I am sure that there are many different perspectives from visiting ISTE members, but I decided to create a list of the top ten reasons that NECC was beneficial for me. There is no particular order.
- The bag of goodies from the exhibit hall provided some motivational content for my students, the classroom bulletin board, and possible lessons for one of our history teachers back at home.
- A recurring theme of how we use technology and not what technology we use was evident and a positive reminder for all educators.
- This is a great place to get 2GB USB drives for free. If you did not get more than four, you really were not trying.
- Alice is a very cool computer programming environment, and the teachers who presented it were very well prepared.
- It was very appropriate to bring your own laptop this time. I found in the past there was not enough to do, but this time seemed highly accessible and relevant at least for me.
- Toshiba and Acer laptops are worth everyone’s time. Even MAC user would like them.
- Open Source software is still cool, and I think I’ll continue to Moodle on down the Road.
- If you have not heard how to use Google’s Sketchpad then you need to see the presentation notes from the BYOL session. This guy really knows how to teach.
- You might run into Bernie Dodge who taught you a lot of really important teaching methods and strategies that make your life easier around technology.
- Learning from what everyone else is doing really helps you with that next great task and challenge back at home. The colleagues and friends made by going to various sessions is priceless.
Well, I really am just reflecting upon a great three days in D.C.. The conference was great; there are some great books that I am ordering from ISTE’s books store; brick and mortar classrooms with blended technologies still rule; and I almost got a picture with the President of the United States. Oh yeah, I do have a picture of Sen. Joe Leiberman which was taken a week later when I went back to D.C. to see the Capitol Building.