Saturday, October 18, 2008

Say Hello If You Know Me

My creation

I had a wonderful time at the ACTEM Conference in Maine this week. I got to see many of my Maine Tweeps, including Alice Barr, Bob Sprankle, Cheryl Oakes, Michael Richards, Mike Arsenault, Sarah Sutter, and Maria Knee (who is actually from New Hampshire) face to face. I met Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach in person for the first time. I also attended Geek of the Week and learned about a lot of new tools including the Big Huge Labs which I used to make this badge.

I love this badge idea. When I go to conferences I want to see the people I know online in real life, but often they don't recognize me and I don't recognize them. Wouldn't it be fun if we all created badges with our avatars and/or profile photos so that people can connect our online identities with our real life selves. I have seen people do this with their second life avatars, and I think it is a great idea. Look for me and my new badge at the Christa McAuliffe conference in New Hampshire, the MassCUE conference in Massachusetts and the Educon 2.1 conference in Pennsylvania. Please don't be shy, say hello if you recognize me. I was so excited to add Page Lennig, Sharon Betts and Cathy Wolinsky to my face to face network this week.

Sheryl's keynote was wonderful. I have never seen her in person and she has such a great energy and puts things so well. Here are some of my favorite quotes:
"Social and intellectual capital are the new economic values in the world economy."
"We need to go from mandated accountability to mutual accountability."
"What are you doing to prepare your students to be Googled?"
"Don't change your teaching - change the way you learn. Become a networked learner, so you can own it and give it away."
I went up and said hello and she actually knew who I was. That was really cool.

My own sessions (I did the same one twice) titled, "Making Things Happen, Tapping in to the Power of the Network," were attended by just a few people, but they seemed to go well. I tried to engage people in some goal setting exercises and then show them how to use a personal learning network to help them achieve their goals. I included some visualizations, some writing and some talking. It really wasn't about the technology, but more about the network. I always feel that we need more structured ways to meet each other face to face at these conferences. I tried to do that in my session. I'll be doing it again in New Hampshire. Here is a link to my slideshow from the conference.

Overall I had a wonderful time. Thanks to everyone for being so gracious and so welcoming!
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