I attend TCEA each year, and each year, I try to challenge myself on what to learn and look for throughout the conference. Attending the conference each year can make things seem like ritual and habit, but making a list of “look for this” learning opportunities keeps me mentally on my feet so I get the most out of my conference time. So here is my list:
1) Innovative Space Design
Designing learning spaces is a hot topic and one that I am investing more and more into understanding the implications on learners and teachers. Through our blended learning projects in my school district, we are engaging teachers on a weekly basis in conversations around seating options, classroom layout, student ownership of the classroom, and so much more. I am hoping to see not only how some are designing their spaces, but also how they are leading the charge for spaced design and funding that work.
2) Blended/Innovative Learning
We have been engaged in blended learning for more than three years as a district. We have iterated and refined our learning and application of blended learning models across the K-12 spectrum. My goal for blended is to engage with those that have also been invested in the process of implementing blended learning and then glean from their experiences so we can continue to scale our work effectively as a district.
3) The Unexpected
Each year I am looking for the thing I did not expect as well. I do not know what it will be this year, but I will know it when I see it. Past experiences had me listening to Angela Maiers talk on the #youmatter movement, discovering the passion of Braeden’s Art (h/t to Rafranz), sharing mustaches with Steve Dembo, and karaoke-ing with 500 of my closest EdTech friends. What will this year hold?
4) That One Guy/Gal (or a Few)!
No. Not THAT that one, but that one that will challenge my point of view and give me a target to grow towards. In the past, that has meant befriending great thinkers and leaders like Todd Nesloney, George Couros, Tom Murray, Shannon Miller, Greg Garner, Amy Mayer, and many more. Look around! There are great people at the convention who will impact your life in amazing ways for many years to come!
So, TCEA veterans, what are your learning look-fors? Share with me @jamielocklin using #TCEA (FYI #TCEA18 and #TCEA2018 are popular, but not the official hashtag).
Jamie Locklin is the Director of Digital Learning for Hays CISD.