Monday, June 30, 2014

ISTE Recap - Day 3 - Where Are All Those “Lazy” Teachers?

Source: ISTE
Nationwide, the witch hunt against teachers unions and teacher tenure has built its argument on the gimcrack premise that educators are inherently lazy. Teachers will no doubt recline in their cushy career thrones once granted a decent living wage and professional flexibility. Well, bring those Chicken Littles to ISTE. Their airy thesis evaporates instantly upon entering the convention hall.

There are no lackadaisical teachers here. There are no uninspired trolls among the animated educators chatting in corridors between rapid-fire sessions. There are no sheeple among the collaborative professionals trading tech on Twitter. The best way to bust open a stereotype is open one’s eyes and see teachers in action at ISTE.

Source: ASIDE, 2014

This morning’s keynote address by writer and “katalyst” Kevin Carroll charged the crowd with an emotional exhortation about the benefits of belonging. Carroll preached the power of play as a uniting force among children. He quoted Plato, saying, “You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation.” If wishing could make it so, Carroll would speak in every conference, convention, classroom, and living room across the nation. As a former in-house change agent at Nike, he showed the famous “Tag” ad to reinforce his action message.



Other themes from the day centered on digital citizenship as the responsibility not just of teachers but also of students. Schools should let children take ownership over drafting a statement of digital purpose and designing activities to emphasize an Internet honor code.

Source: ASIDE, 2014

Another frequent motif was the power of backchanneling to give voice to the hesitant and to create a crowd-sourced avenue for dialogue. Great resources for teacher-to-student and student-to-student backchanneling include Croak.it, TodaysMeet, and Cel.ly.

Augmented reality has definitely hit the mainstream, given the number of ideas and apps being bandied about today. The maker movement has also gained widespread credence as a hands-on must-have for engaging modern kids. The most pervasive argument, however, remained the reminder that regardless of device or website, learning is a mindset. Passion and sharing are the most potent ingredients in nourishing both the teaching profession and students' lives.

Source: Hakan Forss, via Erin Klein

Click here for a recap of ISTE Day 1 and Day 2.

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