Thursday, July 2, 2015

My Reflection of ISTE 2015

I attended ISTE 2015 in Philadelphia for one day and it was an awesome experience.  I heard from other people that it is overwhelming, and that statement is completely accurate. I want to reflect on a few concepts that I learned. These are just 3 of many concepts that I learned. I took a lot of pictures of QR codes, brochures, and links that I will reference later.

Since I only attended one day, I created an agenda of what I was going to see and visit.  I used the ISTE app and favorite sessions, and wrote them down on a piece of paper.  I used this as my guide for the day.  This was extremely helpful.

In addition, on the days I was not at ISTE, I followed the #ISTE2015 on Twitter and I was able to learn about different topics.  I even joined a live broadcast on the ISTE Ignite session on Sunday using Periscope.  It was awesome to hear inspiring stories from other educators.

One of the BYOD sessions I attended was Create your First Touchcast.  I was so happy I was able to attend this session.  I learned about the Touchcast app and how easy it is to create a video.  Here is a Google Doc that was shared with the audience.  A Touchcast will allow students to create videos and express their interpretation of their learning.  Here are some tips that were expressed during the session:
  • Plan your Touchcast (scripts, and use the teleprompter in the app)
  • Use the Google Doc template planning sheet
  • Record your video (can import videos too)
  • Then add the effects, titles
  • Add your vApps
  • Add a clip with whiteboarding

Another area that I spent a lot of my time was in the poster section hall. This area is where students, teachers, admins, and more showcased their projects. One project that I loved was the BYOT^4 Club, Bring Your Own Technology, Tricks, Tips, and Tools. It was a student driven club that was teacher guided. The students told me they are given a list of apps to review in which they used a Google Form to submit their opinions. These apps were provided by the teacher. In addition, the students learned how to create their own app, code, and problem solve. It has given me the inspiration to start a similar club at the +William Davies Middle School in the 2015-2016 school year. For more information, you can visit the BYOT^4 website.

Finally, being a Google Education Trainer, I had the privilege to demo Google Expeditions. This is a new tool from Google that allows you to go on virtual field trips around the world. I visited the Galapagos Islands where I was able to explore the ocean floor, coral reefs, sea life and more. It reminded me of AR, (augmented reality). 

Everyone wore a set of headphones, and used Google Cardboard, which consisted of a smartphone, (a Nexus phone was used here). The instructor, as shown above, used the same equipment in addition to a tablet and a microphone to narrate the field trip. Everyone who was included in this field trip heard the guided tour. It was a great experience. Imagine how the students would react! In the future, Google will give teachers the option to create their own field trips, but right now, the pre-defined packages are available. This product is still in beta.

In conclusion, I was so excited to attend ISTE 2015 in Philadelphia. I learned so much and was able to collaborate with many people. It truly was a great experience and I would highly recommend attending this conference.

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