I've been feeling a time challenge lately. I purposely limit the projects that I get involved in so that I can commit myself to them fully. I took some time to renew my resources this past week, but I'm feeling a little time crunch too.
Time To Renew
On Thursday and Friday, I took time to go to a great free conference at Princeton University in New Jersey. The time I have spent in my various network tools - reading blogs, participating in PLN-type Voicethreads, sharing in Twitter, and attending webcasts - really made this conference a very different experience from the last one I attended at Kean University in the fall.
I had the opportunity to meet several online contacts at dinner and met some new individuals as well. When I went to Kean, I knew I would meet Kevin Jarrett. He was very gracious in sharing his table at the conference with me. It was there that I met an interesting group of New Jersey technologists.
This past Thursday, I had a opportunity to meet several people that I have been networking with over the last year: Kevin Jarrett, Vicki Davis, Kristen Hokanson, Robin Ellis, Pat Sine, and Kathy Schrock. I follow and am followed by all six on Twitter and we've shared some resources, questions, and answers over time. It was nice to be able to sit and talk a little. We were joined by several of the other presenters and organizers of the conference. There was a lot of talk about the topics to be covered over the course of the two day program. I would not have had this chance without the time I've spent with them online.
I had the chance to reconnect on Friday with someone I met at Kean and re-exchanged email addresses to try to keep in touch. All in all, the more I get out to conferences the better equipped I am to provide my students with new and exciting projects.
Time To Learn Something New
One major plus to the event was the way I used the laptop this time. At Kean, it took me almost the whole first day to find out the password to the visitor wifi. At Princeton, it was an open network. I just clicked on the guest wifi and started work.
Vicki asked if I wanted to be part of a live blog panel, so I took the opportunity. Instead of having my notes stuck in Word it is part of the live blog. We took notes during the Thursday evening session, the Friday morning's first panel session, and the Friday afternoon's last panel. Friday's late morning panel was Ustreamed (you'll have to hover over the archived videos to choose the one labeled Princeton and the video to the left which is currently untitled) with a Chatzy chat. I saw a lot of people wandering in an out of the various live blogs, chats, and Ustreams over the course of the two days. I think it would be very hard to sit an watch a live blog versus a Ustream, but at least we did the best we could.
As the Princeton conference went on, I started tagging the websites mentioned via Diigo and into delicious. For links from the conference, go to http://del.icio.us/njtechteacher/08princeton or just search for 08princeton in either social bookmarking tool.
The Time Challenge
This week, my seventh grade is beginning the editing work on the Middle School 1001 Flat Tales project. I volunteered to help out on two other projects: Dennis Richard's Learning Beyond Boundaries proposal and Vicki Davis' Horizon Project judging. Both are well worth your effort if you have some time. I wish I could have a class work as peer reviewers on the Horizon Project, but with the seventh grade working on the flat tales and my eighth grade having a very tenuous schedule with my class due to impending graduation, it's just impossible right now.
May is going to be busy, but a great cap to a lot of learning in my school and personally.
Reynolds, Leo. "squared circles - Clocks." Leo Reynold's photostream. 2005 Nov 6. 2008 May 4.