2010 Reform Symposium

Aug 01 2010

I just attended the 2010 Reform Symposium World Wide eConference while reclining on my own couch. What an incredible opportunity. I found out about it Friday evening while looking through some tweets from those I follow. I managed to get in to two sessions plus the closing remarks and it left me wanting more. Since it was all archived, I can go back and view all the sessions. It won't be quite the same as participating live, but it will be educational, non the less. The presenters were invited to present because they are active Tweeters and Bloggers on education and technology. They were not high dollar presenters. Looking at their profiles, they were teachers, professors and principals with something to share. It was all FREE. WOW... online, from home....great... free, what an awesome combination!

In these days of budget cut backs and travel restrictions, we are so blessed to have people who will step up and organize such first class opportunities for teachers. I want to thank the organizers, presenters and volunteers who made it possible. I'll be suggesting to the teachers I know that they view the recorded sessions.

I attended:

Playing to Learn by Maria Anderson. Her prezi is here http://prezi.com/rj_b-gw3u8xl/playing-to-learn/ I recommend watching the recorded session.

She had several revelations. Here are the ones I really connected with:

  1. Technology is making content irrelevant. It is what you can do with the content that is important.
  2. Students who can't learn Algebra are able to learn to play complex video games that require memorization, logic, teamwork and complex strategies.
  3. Even after years of being away from a video game, one can pick it up again and be just as good or better.

Entrancing Absorption is a term she used for students engaged in a game. 

Maria introduced me to Babylonian numbers. Fascinating. I thought I had the pattern all figured out until she showed 61. You must Google it!

I recorded several links from the presentation and participant remarks. I will be exploring them this evening.

Raph Koster Author A Theory of Fun
Blooms Taxonomy according the Pirates of the Caribbean


On Sunday I made it to the Closing Keynote by Steven Anderson and the Closing Ceremony

Steven's presentation was on Education: Timeless and Priceless.

Steve began with an overview of the history of education and how, throughout history, people have bemoaned the changing technology and complained that the new technology of the day was bad for students.

He talked about how we have the ability to build our own PLN now like in no time before.

This summary does not give the presentation justice. I recommend watching the archive and may watch it again myself.

In the closing ceremony, I learned of the plans to do all this again next year and I'll be looking forward to it. I will put it on my calendar and hope to participate in more sessions.

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Sandra Hines
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