Home Educational Trends Embracing the Extraordinary at ISTE 2017

Embracing the Extraordinary at ISTE 2017

by Susan Meyer
Scenes from ISTE 2017

Were you one of the thousands of educators in San Antonio this week for ISTE 2017? If so, we hope you were also one of the thousands who came by the TCEA Showcase. We had a lot of fun meeting and talking to educators from all over the world. We loved hearing the unique perspectives, challenges, and innovative solutions occurring in different classrooms, districts, and states.

At TCEA, we want to support you in your quest to have the most engaged students and productive learning outcomes possible. We want to introduce you to new technologies and new strategies for using those technologies in the classroom to make your job easier and to further student success. Our goal with the TCEA Showcase at ISTE 2017 was to provide refreshing bursts of content with timely and relevant takeaways that educators could add to their toolbox. Here are some of the ways we shared ideas at the convention.

Demo Slams

Our professional development team rocked the TCEA Showcase with a number of demo slams. These 20-minute presentations provided extremely valuable content in fast-paced, resource-rich segments. In less than a half hour, educators could walk away with an understanding of how to launch a digital breakout, new ideas for back-to-school ice breakers, the perfect apps for the social studies or math classroom, and much more! Attending a demo slam was a great way to pack in a lot of PD in a short time frame.

If you weren’t at ISTE or weren’t able to make it to all of the demo slams, you wanted, you can find links to some of the presentations you missed here. Check them out for some great ideas and resources!

Poster Sessions

Poster sessions were another way for educators to take a break from the hustle and bustle of ISTE sessions and exhibits while still learning. Presenters shared about a number of different topics from STEAM and digital storytelling to programming and robotics and augmented reality. Poster sessions allow opportunities for discussion and for the poster visitor to ask in-depth questions of the presenter. The relaxed atmosphere makes it easy to drop in for a dose of innovation before continuing on your way. For a deeper dive into one of our Monday poster sessions, check out my earlier post for some great STEAM ideas.

Always Time for Making

A big convention can be a lot to take in, so sometimes it’s nice to kick back and take a break with something creative. As part of the TCEA Showcase, we offered a little makerspace activity: creating luggage tags out of colorful duct tape. In addition to being a fun outlet for participants, it also illustrates how easy it is to create a makerspace activity without a lot of resources. Instructions were provided, but participants were also free to go off book and let their imaginations take the lead. Makerspaces don’t have to be expensive or high tech to provide opportunities for engagement. Duct tape is just one of many relatively inexpensive tools that can provide the foundation of a meaningful makerspace. For more great makerspace ideas, check out our FREE makerspace eBook Ready, Set, Make! It contains all of the details you need to get a makerspace up and running at your school.

Were you in San Antonio at ISTE this weekend? If so, did you make it the TCEA Showcase? We’d love to hear from some of our new readers and followers. What was your favorite thing at ISTE 2017? Feel free to share your thoughts in the comment section below. If you weren’t at ISTE, we’d still love you to share what ideas you are most excited about getting started in the new school year.


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