Thoughts on the GLS Playful Learning Summit

Jun 28, 2013 by

Earlier this month, I was given an opportunity to attend the inaugural Playful Learning Summit in Madison, Wisconsin. It was a full day of playful learning workshops, conversations, and professional development dedicated to educators, education researchers, and web/app developers who have a keen interest in creating game-ful and playful learning experiences for students. That’s right, a game-ful environment, NOT a “gamified” learning experience. The summit was part of  the larger Games Learning and Society Conference, or GLS, a gathering much akin to the Games 4 Change conference in New York, but on a slightly more intimate scale. If you love games (video or otherwise), and strive to find ways to create playful learning experiences for your learners, I highly recommend attending next year. The GLS conference is an interesting mix of educators, developers, researchers, and theorists that gave rise to sessions about multiplayer gaming & collaboration in the classroom to effective...

read more

Thoughts on #ConnectedEDU Conference

Apr 20, 2013 by

I’m sitting in a classroom on a Saturday morning…learning. That’s right, while all of the #satchat people are busy tweeting, sharing, and collaborating online, I decided to take it to the next level and make the trek to Jackson, Michigan to participate in a casual, participant driven conference focused on connecting educators, not just lecturing to us. The following are my notes, reflections, and thoughts on the day; my apologies for rambling and “stream of thought” composition. Updates throughout the day will hopefully occur. 9:53 am Typically I’m busy watching Saturday morning cartoons or getting ready for the weekly grocery run, but today I’ve already been introduced to GoSoapBox, an interesting Socrative clone that looks to offer a much more robust set of tools for student discussion response. Students can be directed to respond to reading selections, be given polls in class, and even submit questions and participate in...

read more

Closing Keynote from #MACUL13 in 5 Memes

Mar 24, 2013 by

The annual conference for the Michigan Association of Computer Users in Learning (MACUL) came to a close last Friday with a rousing call from Steve Dembo (@teach42). He urged educators and schools to dare to be first; first with new ideas, first with destroying traditional classroom notions, and first with charting new paths to digital learning and collaboration. Somewhere between Steve calling out the “crazies” amongst us as being the ones with the greatest potential for positive change and being urged to avoid policies dictated by fear, I got an idea. I decided to have a bit of fun and “meme-ify” some of the main elements of the closing keynote. I brought up the MemeGenerator site and brought up a few choice image memes. A word of warning, it’s probably not a good idea to use MemeGenerator with your students; while the site attracts some of the funniest users...

read more

Four Simple Truths – It’s Not About The Technology

Mar 10, 2008 by

This is a previous post written for the MACUL Conference Blog. However, the content is quite relevent to the state of educational technology, and thought that I’d include it here as well. I had a chance this morning to sit in on Marion Ginopolis’ presentation at the Administrator’s Breakfast. Marion is the director for the Michigan Leadership Improvement Framework Endorsement program (MI-LIFE). A long name yes, but it basically boils down to teaching today’s educational leaders to identify the right ways to help educators teach today’s students. Below are the thoughts and highlights that I took away from the presentation. You can find specific details about the presentation and a copy of it at the MI-LIFE Blog. The World Has Changed The world is virtual, digital, and flat. The access to information that we now possess is greater than it has eve been. Collaboration with people around the world...

read more

Geeked about MACUL

Feb 19, 2007 by

I’m absolutely geeked about the MACUL conference next month. Yes, I’m a board member of MACUL, and I have a considerable amount of interest in the association’s success, but after reading the latest post on the MACUL Conference Blog, I’m just positively geeked about the latest development (among many) for this year’s conference. Not as a promoter of the conference, and not as a board member, but as an educator and a blogger. As new technological tools and websites are born every day, there’s a lag between when a tool is made available on the Internet (like Yahoo’s new service called Pipes), and when it can be put into practice and then turned into a formal presentation at a statewide or national tech conference. Apparently, there’s news that a guerrilla breakout session will be moving from room to room at Cobo Hall in Detroit during the conference in order...

read more

MACUL 2007 – Early Registration Online

Dec 18, 2006 by

Regardless of my duties to promote the Michigan Association for Computer Users in Learning (MACUL) as a current board member, I would have been blogging about the MACUL conference anyway. That fact having been made transparent, head on over to the MACUL website and register online for the March 14th-16th conference in Detroit. Apparently, if you register before January 1st, you’re entered into a drawing for a free iPod, but I’m much more interested in all the freebies to be had at the vendor’s booths myself. While I won’t be presenting at this year’s conference, I almost wish I was. At the beginning of the school year I was busy getting adjusted to my new school and duties, and thus I wasn’t producing what I thought to be high quality work with my students. Sure, they were doing great work, but I was re-using older lessons with slight tweaks....

read more