Summer is a great time for educators to reboot! This blog is focused on some of my favorite EdTech conferences where we can get new ideas and meet other educators with enhanced teaching strategies and new ways to deliver engaging content. I have broken it down to National, Regional, State and Local conferences, all offering great sessions that will have an impact on your teaching and get you energized for the upcoming year.
ISTE is the International Society for Technology in Education. This one is simply amazing. It will be held in San Antonio, Texas on July 25th-28th. The Keynote speakers are Jad Abumrad, Jennie Mageria and Reshma Saujani. CrossBraining had a booth alongside GoPro last year and I would have to say it was one of the coolest experiences I have had as an educator. Educators are super excited to be there and the vibe is infectious. There are hundreds of sessions to choose from and you can’t go wrong because the speakers are some of the best educators out there. If you attend, be sure to catch a Matt Miller session, visit the Google interactive booth, try new gadgets at the CDW-G booth and try the Breakout EDU bus that might be parked outside the Henry B. Gonzalez Convention Center. When sessions are over, go check out the Symbaloo EdTech Karaoke contest. If you can not make it to ISTE, jump on Twitter and follow the #notatISTE to keep an eye on everything that is going on at the conference.
ISTE Karaoke ISTE Booth
Regional- Ditch That Conference
Matt Miller continues his theme of Ditch That Textbook with a conference called Ditch That Conference. This is the first time that Matt has hosted this event but not the first time where he has pulled in top notch presenters from all over the United States. Back in December, Matt had a free online Digital Summit. It was a nine day event where he featured a new presenter each day. Matt and the guest would talk about innovative ideas taking place in education. I am sure that Matt will deliver the same awesome quality at his conference in September.
MACUL is hosting Michigan’s is GoogleFEST in Grand Rapids, Michigan on August 8th and 9th. This is an event where attendees will get first-hand knowledge from Google Experts, Google Certified Instructors and Google using teachers. GoogleFEST conferences have popped up all over the world and it is a time for educators to learn how to incorporate some of the innovative products that Google has to offer educators.
I think we will be seeing more and more of these types of conferences because technology overarches all of education and it is no longer a class at school. Teachers with Google Certifications can present at conferences like this making this type of conference very scalable because there are thousands of Google Certified teachers.
Every teacher needs to know how to use technology in their classrooms and this is a great place for all teachers regardless of their technology abilities. I like conferences like this because the sessions are designed so the teacher can pick a beginner, novice or expert class. I will be presenting a session called Digital Storytelling Made Easy at the GoogleFEST in Grand Rapids. I will show attendees how their students can use the free Google Drive space to store all of their student made videos and how they can share these videos with authentic audiences.
Local- EdTech Kickoff
If you can not not make it to a national conference or don’t have the budget of time to make it to a State conference, find a way to go to a local EdTech conference. Here is a statement on EdTech Kickoff being held in Brooklyn, Michigan this July. “This conference will showcase the great teaching, learning and innovation happening in Michigan area schools. Sessions range from Google to hands-on Makerspace activities. Your day will be filled with fun and motivation to kick-start the school year.” These types of conferences are popping up all of the country. It is a great way for educators to join a PLN (Personal Learning Network) so they can begin exchanging ideas with local teachers, possibly begin coordinating events with each other and to simply learn some new tricks. I will be presenting at two sessions at this event because it is close to home and because I want to meet more teachers from my area. Search Google using the key term EdTech Conference and see what pops up.
Attend a conference this summer and get stoked for fall 2017!