Monday, July 29, 2013

E3 Technology: Equip - Engage - Excel

Five cities, five conferences, five days! Such is the whirlwind finish to the 2013 Summer of eLearning. And the E3 conference hosted by Warsaw Community Schools was an amazing way to start the week. Will Richardson packed their beautiful Performing Arts Center for his conversation about the impact that abundance is having on our school environments. At this point, I think we have to make Will an honorary Hoosier, as he has taken his 'Summer of Confusion' tour to 5 of our conferences!

Down the hall, the cafeteria was equally full with some vendor partners setting up booths and chatting with a crowd of excited educators. The energy of these attendees is a testament to their passion for learning and completely dispels any stereotype of glum teachers just days from returning to their classrooms.

In the first session, I joined Ben Rimes, the Tech Savvy Educator from St. Joseph, Michigan. His session, '6 Ways to Tell a Story Without a Pencil', pointed participants toward the Center for Digital Story Telling, as well as his excellent list of Story Telling Platforms. After seeing his great examples, I can't wait to turn my 9-year-old loose on Storybird! Ben also did a great demo of StoryKit which is a free story telling app for the iPad, allowing kids to draw and record audio to enhance and publish their stories.

Candice joined Warsaw kindergarten teachers Carla Milliman and Gina Courtois for an informative session on how they use iPads in the classroom. They shared some great Apps like: Bugs and BubblesMini Adventures - Music, My A-Z, and Number Bonds.  They also had excellent tips on iPad management, app organization, and student engagement. Most importantly they reminded everyone that iPads should not be a reward AFTER learning but the way students ARE learning all day.  Connect with these ladies for more ways to use the iPad.

Warsaw PLC coach, Lorinda Kline, led a great afternoon session that ushered dozens of educators across the threshold into Twitter. With spectacular pacing for the audience of Twitter newbies, Lorinda celebrated each tweet that found its way into the twitterverse, and each egg that hatched into a beautiful picture. I love seeing these conferences bring new people into the conversation, because despite the massive audience on Twitter, educators are still vastly underrepresented in their numbers. For those of you now looking for others to connect with in this space, we hope you'll join us in tagging your learning with #INeLearn and follow @INeLearn to stay up with the great things happening in Indiana - great things like #e3Tech!



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