Looking back and reflecting on the three days of learning I am not sure what to begin with. Sunday afternoon we had a full house of amazing educators learning about the maker movement and how to make this happen at their school. We covered how to create an authentic, sustainable, and vibrant makerspace in their school. It was four hours of making and tinkering with all kinds of tools.
On Sunday evening, we heard from Ginger Lewan @GingerLewman and it was a great keynote focused around the idea that we need to give students more voice and choice in their learning. Ginger brought a lot of passion and excitement and after a day of learning with educators and talking about the power of giving learners choices. I went home that night mentally preparing myself for what the next day was going to entail. It is never easy to bring 19 middle schools to a conference, but that is what I was about to do the next day.
Monday morning rolled around, and I could hardly wait to get to the opening sessions. I was going to get to hear George Curous @gcouros speak again. I also was honored to receive the K-12 Technology Leader Award for our state. This award goes out to our staff at Harrisburg South Middle School. I get to work with some of the most amazing people in education every day. That was a glimpse into what I get to do every day when I walk into HSMS.
After a compelling keynote from George, it was off to make sure our middle schoolers were setting up and preparing for all the visitors our space would receive. A huge shout out to Steelcase, and Interstate Office Supplies for helping create an incredible makerspace environment. Our students spent from 9:30 am till 4 pm tinker, creating, and sharing their love for this learning environment. On top of this space, I was also presenting two breakout sessions on Monday.
My first session was on SeeSaw and incredible learning journal for all ages. We had a packed house ready to learn about this tool. It was a lot of fun to connect and collaborate with so many passionate educators. I am willing to help anyone get started with using SeeSaw just reach out to me via Twitter or email and we can set up a time. It is a powerful tool to connect your classroom with your parents in an easy and manageable way. Also during this workshop was able to showcase the power of using the reflector in the classroom. During my presentation, I was able to mirror my device to my computer so everyone could see what it looks like from an iPad and using seesaw. If you have never seen reflector in use let me know, and I would gladly show you the power of this tool in your classroom. It is affordable and great way to show your students screens from right where they are sitting.
My second session was focused on the power of story and friend of mine named Lyka. She is preparing to come to planet earth and join a YOUR classroom. She comes with a Mission manual as she needs to learn as much as she can from your students to take back to her planet to try and save it. Along the way, she will challenge your learners to help her through hands-on tasks.These tasks can be formed around your content and curriculum. If you’re interested in Lyka, reach out to me @travislape on Twitter or @connectedsparks to learn more.
We wrapped up in the afternoon with loading the middle schoolers back on the bus and sending them back to Harrisburg. This video below shows the fun and learning that happened on Monday at #TIE16. Phew even after all this my day was not quite over.
Thanks again to our friends Steelcase, Interstate Office Supplies, and Squirrels we were able to host a #TWEET UP event this year. We took the event to Buffalo Wild Wings were our #SDEDCHAT was born. Two years ago Lenessa Keehn @lenessakeehn and I decided SD needed a place to connect and share ideas with other educators. This event was focused on connecting face to face and getting some new Twitter friends to join us on the 2nd and 4th Tuesday of the month at 8 pm CST and 7 pm MT. This was an incredible event with over 50 educators attending this free social sponsored by our great partners. Day 2 of #TIE16 is complete, and I was ready for bed
Day 2 of #TIE16 was a little more relaxing for myself. I got to attend sessions and take in some wonderful learning opportunities. One of my favorites was watching Angie Plaine @angieplaine rock her game based learning workshop. This was her first time sharing the amazing things she is doing with students at #HSMSTIGERS. I also took in a great session on the power mastery connect. Our district is piloting in an elementary and middle school a personalized learning environment. Masteryconnect is a great tool to help teachers and administrators keep track and help learners work towards mastery of the standards. I also had time to hang out finally with the wonderful people at Squirrels.
They have been such big supporters of all our South Dakota Edcamps that it was nice to put faces with names. Again this company is incredible, and I would love to discuss the amazing tool they have for schools with anyone. Just connect with me on Twitter and I can get you started.
The day ended with a tech smash! These are always fun because I learn something new that I did not know before. One of my newest tools I love using is Canva, and it was one of the tech tools they shared about on Tuesday. Canva is a great tool not only for teachers but students as well. It is an online poster, flyer, presentation, twitter graphic, Facebook graphic and so many other options to create classy and fun graphics. This is one graphic that I created for Laura Fleming @LFlemingEDU and I for our summer PD on maker spaces. It is easy to create and fast. This graphic took me maybe 10 to 15 minutes to create. Check this tool out for yourself, but also show your students and let them create projects that they can be proud of because of the professional look they can have.
Well, #TIE16 was an incredible experience, and I am so glad that I got to participate this year. I can tell looking back at these three days I am not sure how I survived, but I did, and here I am a week later reflecting on my learning.
If you see anything in here that you want to learn more about please reach out to me and I would gladly help you or your district out. Also if you are looking at this Makerspace PD and want more information let me know and I can get you anything you need.