About a week ago I took a challenge promoted by Angela Maiers to blog about the upcoming ISTE Conference. Knowing that is going to be an awesome conference again this year, I had to jump at the chance to interact with other bloggers writing on the same topic. As we each attend a conferences, we each have different “take aways.” Sessions and dialogue with conference attendees, presenters, vendors, etc… provide us with a wide array of tech advice and ideas.
I am getting ready for ISTE in a unique way. I am not buying a plane ticket or reserving a hotel room. I am cleaning out by spare bedroom/office. Instead of traveling to Philadelphia, I will be attending as much of the conference as I possibly can – virtually, just as I did in June of 2010.
Last year at this time I was just starting to get acclimated to Twitter, even though I had registered an account on October 6, 2006. My account sat dormant because I didn’t understand the nuances of Twitter. Why did I need a venue to tell the world I was sitting on my deck enjoying a glass of ice tea? Throughout late spring and the summer of 2010 I attended several conferences virtually by following the hashtags. As an engaged learner, I was thrilled to find new learning at the tip of my fingertips whenever I needed a daily learning fix! Connecting with educators around the world has been an eye-opening, inspiring process.
Unfortunately the ISTE conference falls during the same time as the Learning Forward-Iowa retreat. As the incoming president, I’m expected to be there (and of course I want to be!) Tech integration is on our learning docket. But, the conflict makes it impossible to attend ISTE in person.
The spare room/office still has to undergo some finishing touches, but it is well on its way of becoming a relaxing spot to attend the conference. ISTE does offer a few options to attend the conference besides following the hashtag. Information can be found here. Chances are I’ll only be following the hashtag when time permits.
Pros of attending virtually:
- No crowds
- No long lines at airports, restaurants, restrooms, etc…
- Attend from the comfort of your own home or a relaxing get-a-way
Cons of attending virtually:
- Not being able to meet so many members of my Twitter PLN in person.
- Not being able to share in the learning through ongoing dialogue after sessions.
I will “see you at ISTE.” Look for me in your Twitter stream. I’m thankful this conference will not be void of numerous TWEETS! With the room about done, next up – getting better at social bookmarking so that I can organize all the beneficial ideas that will be coming at the end of June!
I know I’ll have an abundance blog post ideas coming my way during ISTE. Thanks, Angela Maiers for the challenge! I look forward to reading other ISTE bloggers’ posts!