Sunday, July 06, 2008

Educators wherever we are...

It is always interesting coming home from NECC. I spent four days talking to hundreds (if not thousands!) of like-minded educators who are engaged and excited about the current and upcoming possibilities of technologies to support teaching, learning, and professional development. I had one-on-one conversations with many dedicated educators who were there to learn, and I loved the time I could spend with them, learning what they get excited about.

On the trip home, I still found myself talking to everyone. I ran into some NECC-goers in the airport, and we discussed our favorite sessions and the new things we saw. After our little group broke up, a businessman next to me started asking me about my laptop. I was more than happy to show it off.

On the plane, I sat next to a retired Army general who was very interested in the Kindle, so I continued to "spread the word". At the sandwich shop in Atlanta's airport, I was using my phone (HTC Touch) to check my email, and three employees came out from behind the counter to take a look at it and learn more about it. On the bus home from Boston's Logan Airport, I had to tether the laptop to the phone to find a hotel reservation for the woman in the seat next to me, since the amount of traffic we encountered on the 90-mile trip caused her to miss both the last boat and plane to Nantucket, where she was planning to spend the holiday weekend.

We talk about engaging our students and getting them up-to-speed on the 21st century skills. I guess I am figuring out that if we don't get the rest of the current workforce and the employers of tomorrow up-to-speed, too, our students may not get the chance to utilize these skills.

Be generous with your time with strangers. Those of us that tote the "gadgets" need to explain the possibilities to others if they are interested. An educator is an educator wherever we are!


Photo courtesy of the American Memory Collection, Lewis Wickes Hine, Photographer.