Wednesday, October 14, 2015

A Tech Oasis at OESIS

Within the past week I was given two really spectacular gifts of personal realignment. My first one was a chance to reunite with nature on a field trip of canoeing & outdoor fun.  My second one was an opportunity to fly with 4 colleagues and meet up with our Head of School in Boston to attend a two-day educational technology conference. Given that being in tune with your inner-techie is newly "geek chic" this last decade or so, I was totally in my tech element at OESIS: The Online/Blended Education Symposium for Independent Schools. Add in, I was in good company with nearly 300 participants from 110 schools.

It's amazing how many sessions you can squeeze into a 2-day time period: 2-morning keynotes (comprised of 4 speakers each), 11 presentation sessions, a workshop or two during lunch, and 3 "Think Tank" sessions! My brain was serving as an extra-absorbent sponge! It's interesting to see how other schools are incorporating elements of flipped or blended classes, integrating online learning as a way to personalize and individualize the educational experiences to help students raise their own personal bar.  It's been interesting having discussions with people who are leaps and bounds ahead of us and how they are doing what they are in their schools; likewise, it's been interesting to see the ways in which we are ahead of the learning curve.

Along the way, during these two days, there has been a lot of talk about "change."  That (of course) serves more than #edtech.  "Change" is that one thing that is truly constant, and many of us fear.  Yet my favorite quote this week is:
One of my favorite slides showed how we are also in a state of changing technology--even 100 years ago.  Here's a modified version or that:

This image show a parallel place to where we are now.

As we move forward, it's only true that we wrestle a bit.  As you go forth, take note of where you are so you know where to go next.

Images from!t=1018,; Old-timey photo in the Motivation app, and pic from the Photo Collection, Los Angeles Public Library.

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