Sunday, June 28, 2015

The Story of How I Finally Got Connected

This is my first blog post and I hope there are many more to follow. There are a lot of topics I thought about writing about, but the one that I kept thinking about was my experience at CUE Rock Star in Petaluma back in February.  I wanted to show how that one weekend has led to so many other great things for my school and me.

I'm sure CUE Rock Star camps are amazing experiences for everyone, but I feel like it was especially great for someone like me.  I was someone who really wanted to be connected but wasn't. I had a Twitter account but didn't really use it. I had never heard of Voxer.  I wasn't learning from educators in other districts.

The idea to go to CUE Rock Star came from Kristina Allison, a great teacher in our school district. For those that have seen the first follower video before, she would definitely be our district's leader when it comes to Edtech.  I told her I would gladly be her first follower.

While there I took a session on Minecraft from Jon Corippo. That led to me having Minecraft installed on computers at our school and having a before and after school Minecraft class starting next year.

Another session I took was from Brian Briggs. Briggs showed how you can use Parrot Drones and Spheros to teach kids to code. That led to me going into classrooms and teaching students how to use them.

Another session I went to was by Jen Klozko on how to blog (hey thanks Jen, it only took 4 months but I finally did it!).

From this weekend I was introduced to Voxer by Amy Fadeji. I now have a group of elementary school principals from all over that I can connect with, ask questions, and get advice.  Being more connected to these educators allowed me to go visit Star Academy in Natomas where Jen is principal and for Amy and Jen to come visit my school.

Going to this conference also gave me ideas of what we could do for our district. In May our district had our first ever Tech Summit. I gave the keynote for the event and presented two different sessions. It was a great day for our district and I had a lot of fun.

This Voxer group also led to me learning about the NAESP conference down in Long Beach thanks to Adam Welcome.  Adam told me all about it and how it would be a great place to continue learning and connecting, so tomorrow morning I head down to Long Beach.  He added me to a NAESP Voxer group and can't wait to meet people I have been connecting with for months but haven't met in person.  Not going to lie, I also can't wait for the much anticipated Bean Bag tournament.

The fun continues next week as I get to take 8 teachers from my school to CUE Rock Star Lake Tahoe. I know my teachers will love it, and I hope they find a way to connect with other educators and keep it going long after it is over.

I want to thank CUE Rock Star for providing such a fantastic atmosphere that allows people to learn and connect.  I also want to sincerely thank my PLN for being so awesome and giving me a place to get energized and even more excited about education. I love how one February weekend in Petaluma has turned into all these great things. I look forward to continuing learning from everyone. Now that I am connecting with so many amazing educators there is no going back.  I feel like the fun has just begun.