Wednesday, February 10, 2016

TCEA 2016...A Wrap-Up

This post is sponsored by Samsung. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 

As I have for the past several years I had the pleasure of gathering with thousands of educators from across Texas and beyond at the annual TCEA conference in Austin. I enjoy spending the week there learning and sharing because of the high quality of sessions and folks that are there. It really is one of my favorite conferences and I encourage you if you get the chance to go, do it!

This year I had 3 general sessions that I delivered and I wanted to share the presentations and resources with everyone so we can all grow together. All the resources are open for sharing, comment and adding to so if you go through them and have anything to add please do.

The Tech-Savvy Administrator- A little over a year ago I published a book with ASCD by the same title. The goal is to help school leaders be more comfortable with technology in order to better understand how it works in the classroom. This session focused on the various ways that school leaders could use common, classroom tools in their practice. Once they have a grasp of how they can work for them they can begin to understand their use in the classroom.

Resource Doc:

Curating Content-Centered around another one of my books, this session introduced the concept of curating information and the tools used to do it better. We talk about my 4-step curation process, the need for teachers to improve their information literacy skills and what are my favorite curation tools. The benefit here is everything we talk about for teachers, can work with students too so the benefit is two-fold!

Resource Doc:

Improving The Technology Walkthrough Process: Based on this blog post I wrote awhile back this session focused on how school leaders can better look at how technology is being used in the classroom. There are 5 simple questions we need to ask when looking at how technology is being used. We covered that and how we can coach teachers through the technology improvement process.

Resource Doc:

The Vendor Floor was packed with new, updated and some interesting solutions for the classroom. Normally I don’t get too excited about many things happening there but this year was different. I had the chance to spend some time with the folks from Samsung EDU and they have a great program to increase the value of hardware in schools and districts.

Partnering with Neverware you can purchase a set of Chromebooks and get a set of licences to convert already existing hardware to Chromebooks as well. Great for those on a budget who want to improve technology but stretch the dollars as far as they will go. I would encourage you to check out the site they have dedicated to it to learn more.

The other exciting thing I saw at the Samsung Booth was the fact that no matter their curriculum solutions they are offering on-going Professional Development to go along with it as well. Now that's important. Many products schools and districts buy come with PD but rarely do they come with ongoing PD. That can be a major part of adoption of new technologies. Check out their Education page to learn about all the solutions and how they can make a difference in your classroom.

I absolutely enjoy every moment of TCEA. Even though my Ignite session kicked my butt and I didn’t get to spend as much time networking with folks as Iike to it was still a wonderful learning experience for me and am already looking forward to TCEA 2017!

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