Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Help Me Build My BLC10 Presentations
I've been attending and presenting at conferences for quite a few years now and last year was my first experience at Alan November's Building Learning Communities conference. I should have known they were already planning for the next conference when only 3 days after I arrived back home, I received the loveliest email from Alan November asking me to return to BLC10. I can't even express how honored I was/am to be asked back.
In a few weeks, I will present at FETC and then in June, ISTE. I'm very much looking forward to those conferences, but BLC is different. It's much smaller and intimate. Most of the presenters (not me) are "famous" in the world of education. It's great to be able to sit and have a drink with that same person whose blog you read or presentation you've seen at larger conferences. Everyone is approachable, available and WANTS to talk to YOU. The focus is clearly on authentic learning and the opportunities to engage others are presented at every turn. It's helpful to find out that the same frustrations we experience here in Palm Beach County, FL are often the same elsewhere and in many cases, worse! The best is when you discover some successful ways others are dealing with your same frustrations. When I left BLC09, I had new friends and lots to think about as I returned to my classroom in the fall.
Now, I'm starting to think about some topics for my BLC10 presentations. Last year, I spoke on personal learning networks, VoiceThread and integrating a variety of free online tools into the curriculum. I've got some ideas but I'd like to hear from you.
When you attend conferences, what are some sessions you always hope to find but never seem to be available (or are not satisfying)? What are your suggestions? What would be most meaningful to YOU?
While you're coming up with ideas for me (thanks!), watch this 4 min. BLC video created by Brian Mull. It really captures the heart of what BLC is.
(Note: In the comments below, Brian Mull shares that he did not create the video. It was created by Alas Media. Thanks for setting the record straight, Brian!)