Tuesday, November 20, 2012

iPad Summit USA

On November 6th-8th, I attended EdTechTeacher's iPad Summit USA, a professional development conference held in Boston, MA.  The conference was jam-packed with a full-day hands-on pre-conference as well as two additional days consisting of 3 keynote speeches and 8 workshops.  I chose to attend the pre-conference session "iPads in the Elementary Classroom" where I played with apps for collecting information, screencasting, and creating stories and movies.  The most useful apps we used, for both the teacher and for students, were Evernote, Book Creator, Educreations, and Explain Everything.  The biggest takeaway for me is that the strength of iPads lives not in content-specific apps but rather in the students' ability to create projects that demonstrate understanding.

One important thing I became aware of at this conference was Ruben R. Puentadura's concept of SAMR (substitution, augmentation, modification, and redefinition) which is important to consider when designing lessons plans and deciding how to integrate technology in the classroom..  Check out Ruben presenting this past June 2012 in Cambridge here.

Lastly, I walked away from the conference with a homework assignment for myself- to read Tony Wagner's book "The Global Achievement Gap."  Wagner was one of our keynote speakers, and he discussed how the culture of schooling as we have traditionally experienced it does not match innovative learning, and I am very interested to learn more about what he has to say on the topic.

If you are interested in learning more about my experience at the conference, please come find me, email me, or check out my tweets from the conference: @meganhaddadi

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