This past Saturday, December 5th, I had the great fortune to be able to participate in the Discovery Educator Network (DEN) San Antonio Day of Discovery. There was so much fun, collaboration and sharing throughout the day. Steve Dembo, Mike Bryant and Justin Karkow were fanstastic presenters! Malinda McCormack, PBS/KLRN and Jennifer Faulkner, Alamo Heights ISD/TCEA Reg 20, put on a fantastic day of learning in conjunction with the DEN guys.
It was so refreshing to work with teachers that were new to using streaming and/or technology tools in their classrooms. So many technology tools were shared in sessions with the DEN guys and put into practice in the playground area. I assisted Elaine Plybon and Linda Rush, DEN Leadship Council for Texas, for part of the last playground session and struggled using Macbooks instead of Windows computers. I couldn’t remember half of the things that I needed to to use the Macbooks effectively and certainly wasn’t much help to Elaine and Linda!
After the session I was invited to join Malinda, the DEN guys and Miguel Guhlin for dinner that evening at a local restaurant. My husband made us run late as he was watching a U of A game but that’s another story! The fun was in full swing as you can see from the pictures here. Even though everyone was ‘off the clock’, tech talk still occurred and we reminisced about the good ‘ole days when I first started using technology and when I worked under Miguel Guhlin as a campus instructional technologist (CIT) in the San Antonio ISD (SAISD). There was so much experience and knowledge about integrating technology at one table it was overwhelming!
I was only able to work with Miguel for a year before my position as a CIT was cut but he served as a great mentor, encourager and support in my personal learning network. I started following him on Twitter and maintaining my own blog as a result of his prodding and encouragement. As a result of following him on Twitter and subscribing to his blog,
When I first saw Miguel that morning, I excitedly greeted him and we began to talk about the many things that I am doing online. He jokingly says that he never heard, read or knew that he was my mentor and I credit my online success as a result of me following his suggestions to step out of my comfort area and take a risk by
Miguel’s prodding started the path of becoming a huge advocate for using Twitter/Plurk to learn about technology education, present for state and national conference about instructional technology, applying to become a STAR Educator with the DEN, to participating in webcasts and the webcast academy at EdTechTalk to now co-hosting the Classroom 2.0 LIVE! weekly broadcast in Elluminate/LearnCentral, moderating Ellumiante sessions and serving as the Flat Classroom™ Project Administrator with Vicki Davis and Julie Lindsay.
This long, wandering, ever growing path all started with Miguel modeling the right way to do things personally and professionally with technology. I followed his lead and been afforded some awesome opportunities that I am truly grateful for and work with some awesome colleagues. Steve Hargadon is immensely supportive of me and helps me grow all the time interviewing people and conducting Elluminate sessions. Julie and Vicki are phenomenal people to work with and I have learned so much from my personal learning network that would not have been possible had I not started following my passion of doing things onlineand creating a digital footprint.
To top off all the fun, it was Steve’s birthday and he celebrated it San Antonio style at dinner! You can read more about the Day of Discovery from Miguel’s blog at http://www.mguhlin.org/2009/12/san-antonio-day-of-discovery-podcasts.html. (The picture is a bit blurry as I just got my Blackberry a week or so before and was still new at using the features of the phone.)