Thursday, July 5, 2012

EdCamp Detroit Connections at ISTE

Erin Klein and I killing time at the Marriot before our red eye flights back home.

      As much as I love learning about new technology integrations, new devices, and what the future holds for technology in education, I love connecting with other like-minded individuals even more!  I am a social butterfly by nature, and ISTE allowed me to take flight in San Diego.  Prior to ISTE, I had helped with EdCamp Detroit .  This allowed me to get to know some of the innovative leaders of Michigan and be able to connect with them at ISTE. 

      One of them happened to be Erin Klein, an education blogger extraordinaire, pictured above.  What an asset she is to education!  I enjoyed hanging out with her and her husband and having wonderful conversations about being a teacher! She introduced me to so many amazing people!  She is a networking pro!  I think I have found a blogging mentor and a fellow passionate teacher/crazed mom of young children friend.
I attended a reception with Mayim and encouraged her to pay tribute to the Edubros.
       I attended the EduBros party on Sunday night after the keynote.  Nick Provenzano, one of the EduBros, is the founder of EdCamp Detroit, so I had connections with him previously.  I told Nick that I would be meeting Mayim on Monday, and he said it would be awesome to get Mayim to do a fingerstache.  So, at the VIP reception for Texas Instruments, I asked her if she would be up for it.  By the looks of the picture, I am sure she felt a little silly, but was all in fun!  She was signing posters, in which I had one made out to my sister, Meredith, who is huge fan of Mayim's.  After the fingerstache photo, I asked her if she could make one for Nick...and draw a stache on her photo.  She agreed and actually took her time to draw a nice mustache on herself. I was impressed!  Actually, each time I talked with her, both in the morning at her session and at the reception, she never seemed to be in a hurry.  We had real conversations, and I think she could be a great asset in the world of educational advocacy. 
      I attended EdCamp Detroit for the first time 2 years ago.  Prior to going, I had tweeted something about what I would like to present.  I remember being on my couch and getting a direct message from @EngagingEd about EdCamp.  We chatted back and forth.  I wasn't quite sure who I was talking with, as @EngagingEd uses a logo instead of a photo.  I never was able to meet up with him at EdCamp, but we continued to chat via twitter about education throughout the year.  I attended TEDx Detroit this year in the fall, and while I was eating lunch, I saw a guy walk by with the Engaging Educator logo.  I met up with Ben, and it was great to put a face to the twitter back and forth conversations and the leadership he provides to the education world.  In prepping for ISTE, we exchanged tweets, and he asked me to be a guest on his Blog Talk Radio Show to share my ISTE experiences. 

Listen to internet radio with Engaging Educators on Blog Talk Radio
      First of all, I didn't even know there was such a thing like Blog Talk Radio...and I plan on using it in my classroom next year!  Secondly, I was so honored that he would think of me and include me in such a cool thing!  The radio show was easy and fun to participate in, as I was walking through the convention center and standing in line for Yong Zhao's keynote!  I spoke about my presentation on edmodo, as well as being a newbie at ISTE! Later that morning, I had purchased a hot pretzel and pop, and I needed to sit down to eat it.  I stumbled upon a presentation on the Common Core that Ben was doing at the Blogger's Cafe.  He did a great job showcasing resources out there, much of which Engaging Educators had assembled.  Again, just another way my local EdCamp Detroit connections made ISTE feel a bit like home! 

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