Tuesday, February 22, 2011

METC 2011 Reflections

METC was once again a great experience. Spending Tuesday and Wednesday surround by people who are excited about using technology as a tool to inspire, challenge, and motivate students to do their best, was a very rewarding experience. I was so energized to go back to my classroom, but going back was a big change too. Other teachers kept asking me, “so how was the conference.” I had a hard time answering, how was I supposed to explain to them all the learning that took place in the keynotes, sectionals, lunch, dinner, in between sectionals, and at the tweetup.

METC is about so much more than just going and listening to the presenters. It is a chance to connect with people who share the same passion as you do about teaching. The best answer I could give was, “It was great.” What more could I say, “It was great.” Now that I have had a few days to process, I find myself missing the connection and the time I was able to spend on Twitter soaking in so much information.

The first keynote, Rushton Hurley (@rushtonh), set things off on the right note. He said something that really stuck with me, “you may not have time to get through the curriculum because of the way you are teaching it. Even after only teaching for 5 years I have found that it is easy to keep doing what I have done in the past. Hurley reminded me that I need to make sure that what I do in the classroom is the best for the students. Is there another way I can teach my students this concept that will be more concrete for them or that will motivate them and make them excited about learning.

Kevin Honeycutt (@kevinhoneycutt) also inspired me. His excitement and passion for helping kids launch makes me want to find a ways to see the students in my classroom launch. We have a responsibility to develop a relationship with our students. We need to stay connected to the world out students are growing up in so that we know the lessons that they need to learn.

METC is about more than just inspiration it is also a chance to get new resources and new ideas for the classroom. I learned about great ways to give students their own voice with student blogs. Thank you @jhox1. I learned some fun ways to teach elementary students how to use processing tools. Thank you @tammyworcester. I still haven’t had the chance to search through all the resources provided by Hurley at https://sites.google.com/site/rushtonsmetc2011sessions/or by Honeycutt at http://kevinhoneycutt.org/

I also have to congratulate my colleague @kevcreutz for doing a two great presentations. Click on the links to check out his presentations (Twitter for Teachers and HOTTS: Higher Order Thinking Skills)

“We can do so many things without technology, and so many more with it.”—Rushton Hurley