Wednesday, December 10, 2008

TIES Hangover

I have a mental hangover following this year's TIES conference. It will take some time for me to fully digest all the great ideas, conversations, and feedback from the past three days. First, I want to say thank you to everyone who attended my sessions. I think I learned more as a presenter from your feedback than you may have taken away from attending. My favorite thing about any edtech conference is meeting people. I met face-to-face for the first time many people I learn from in my personal learning network including Glenn Wiebe, Doug Johnson, and Marianne Malmstrom as well as reconnect with educators I already had a face-to-face relationship with including Scott Schwister, Michael White, Mike Walker, Chris Turnbull, Marcia A. Rockwood, Greg Berg, Cara Hagen, many teachers from NEMEN, Kathy Ames, teachers from Z-M Schools, Fridley, St. Francis, and Columbia Heights. I know I am forgetting some.

Some new and interesting ideas I came away with:
  1. Instead of the school buying laptops for 1:1 initiatives they could give vouchers so teachers and students can buy their own. This could alleviate some terms of use issues and allow those who want better computers to spend a little more.
  2. Use Twitter as a writing prompt.
  3. Use machinema in a media class to produce films based on what students in a writing class write. (asynchronous collaboration that mimics how work is done in the professional world)
Some observations:
  1. In the exhibit hall I saw a guy doing a price comparison using his iPhone while the vendor was giving him quotes. I don't envy these sales people.
  2. You could go to this conference and have whatever bias about technology, pedagogy, and learning reinforced because at each session time there were sessions addressing each view. (Ex. Internet filter Nazi types could safely retreat to sessions about network schematics, firewalls, filters, etc. while us constructivist teachers could gorge ourselves on web 2.0 bonanzas).
  3. While meeting people was great and presenting was extremely valuable from a participant standpoint I probably learn more participating in my PLN on a daily basis than attending a conference.
  4. For the past three years this conference has started with a highly inspirational and thought provoking keynote but ended with a dull-dry business oriented keynote and message from the Gov's office. Why don't we end this on a high note. It would be great if the highlight of the closing session was not the door prizes. Some suggestions for next year's speakers: Clayton Christensen, Clay Shirky, or Michael Welsh.
  5. The communities of interest sessions are what give this conference depth. They should be given more emphasis. (less General Sessions, more Communities of Interest).
  6. It would be real nice to see an online version of this conference in the future, maybe in the Spring.


dave said...

Thanks Carl-
I couldn't agree more. I would love more of the communities of interest. I learned more from them than I did from the presentations... and I came away with some new people to connect with.

I'd love an online version. I would also like to see sessions pre-posted so the face to face sessions could me more interactive.

Thanks again for your MUVE Community of Interest. I got a lot out of it and I enjoyed meeting you.

Glenn Wiebe said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...


It was great meeting you and talking video games and MUVEs! Hope your community on MUVEs went well / got sucked into another conversation, got worried about making my flight and left early.

I appreciate your work! Will be checking out more of your stuff.