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Sunday, April 13, 2014

UCET 2014 Thoughts

Here are my thoughts from UCET 2014

Loved the keynotes. Couldn't have had better speakers than the Canadian duo of Dean Shareski and George Couros.

Dean had five main points: Be aware of wonder, be interesting, share your joy, be grateful, and just do it.
Here are my notes from his presentation.

1. Wonder: opposite of boring Find the I'm bored video. Be aware of wonder, remember the little seed in the Styrofoam cup.
Find video on awe. We have a responsibility to awe. Take a photo everyday. Be mindful.
How often do you get your students to wonder? Find a photo
2 be interesting. Best thing you can do for your students is to be an interesting adult. Gary Stager
We need to deliver something more as the educator. What makes it interesting to come to your class? Share what its like to be a learner.
And this is all we know so far...meddler in the middle. Be in the middle learning with them.
What are you learning right now? Do your students know it?
3. Share it
We are connected and so is our joy. Video of baby ripping paper. Contagious joy
Video newsletter
When we find interesting cool stuff we share it.
4 be grateful.
5. Just do it. Direct correlation between happiness and silliness in ones life.
When was the last time you did something where the primary purpose was to bring joy? Adults need to have fun so children will want to grow up.

I have been a big fan of George since I got on Twitter a couple of years ago. Was glad I got to hear him in person as well as have a few minutes to chat during the conference. Here are some images from his presentation.

to inspire meaningful change, you must first make a connection to the heart before you make a connection to the mind.

George told a story about his dad learning how to read and write well on in his life because he wanted to connect with his sons using email and facebook. Very powerful story. Also told a story about an assembly in which a girl tweeted out beforehand that she didn't want to hear more of what they aren't supposed to do on the internet. George could have been upset at this tweet, but he let it go and presented and told the story of his dad. It happened to be the one year mark of his father's death. He was emotional in the presentation, she tweeted out that she was glad he came out on such a hard day for him. He stopped the presentation and her stand up. She came and gave him a hug. I was impressed with how he handled this situation and that this young lady walked out with a great feeling about herself and the assembly. Could have gone much differently, I know many people that would not have handled this the same way and allowed for such an outcome.

In his presentation he discussed blogging as portfolio which I thought was the idea of the conference for me. I changed the design of my blog to fit this and tagged posts with ties to the standards that I get evaluated on by administrators. Students would use blogs to show their learning and create a powerful, positive digital footprint. Thought this was great and am incorporating this into my class.

Doctopus- Great way to use google docs to get one out to all your students and not have to worry about sharing and getting it back to you.

Pechaflickr for spontaneous student presentations

Daily Create: small daily activities that get students to be creative

Creative commons search for images: don't have to worry about copyright and appropriateness.

Use blogs in class

Have students use 5 mins of creativity a day

Be interesting to students

I decided to present this year and hopefully add to the conference. I did a presentation on using Twitter for personalized professional development. You can access the presentation here I thought it went well. Had a packed room, met a lot of great educators, even the mom of one of my former students.

I also presented on We use this in my class to learn place name geography. It has become a fun tool for learning and competing.

Was nice to feel like I gave back some to the conference that more than any other had helped me out. One day maybe I can be as smooth as Dean or George.

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