My First Day EVER at #SXSWedu

I have been to many conferences, but I've never been to SXSWedu.  Today was my first day ever.  I wasn't really sure what to expect but I am so happy that I came (and thankful to TEA and ESC6 for the scholarship!).  Here were some of my favorite moments from today...

I started my day TOTALLY inspired by Diana Laufenberg who talked about "Creating the Classrooms We Need."  I was furiously taking notes and simultaneously tweeting her content (check her out @dlaufenberg) throughout her session, but here were some of my favorite quotes and shares in case you missed them on Twitter:
  • We have shifted from an information deficit ---> information surplus … what is the reason for showing up to school every day?
  • There are PEOPLE showing up to your class everyday to become better versions of themselves. We teach KIDS.
  • Where in the assessment process is it about music selection and compelling images and a well crafted script to sell a message? We stop at can you read … can you answer questions about what you read.
  • Check out this student-made stop motion video about The Mutter Museum! Amazing!
  • Fostering Inquiry by Scaffolding Curiosity - Get kids to be curious enough to do research on their own.
  • State of the Union Bingo (I didn't even know this existed!) or create a Twitter chat to get your kids involved in evening debates and speeches.
  • Compliance and standardization will not get us to innovation and creativity!

Then I headed over to the Google Lounge and heard several wonderful speakers before I presented on ChromeBooks in the Classroom.  Here were my favorite Google tips and tricks:
  • Google+ 2012 Infographic
  • Google+ Unique Features
    • Circles-manage and segment your audience
    • Hangouts-10 person simultaneous video chat
    • Communities-same functionality as google group with more interaction
    • Events-integrated with google calendar, schedule handouts this way, party mod
  • Google Web Academy
  • When searching in Google, search for your answer - not your question.
  • Use Google Search Tools like keywords, color, reading level, language, and source to unlock the power of Google Search.

I ended this amazing, head-spinning day with a lovely (and cheeky!) keynote speaker, Asenath Andrews. This incredible woman founded the Catherine Ferguson Academy, an alternative public high school for teen mothers. What she has done is phenomenal and she's really a treat to listen to.  While I can't possibly convey to you her immensely engaging way of speaking with this simple blog post, I can share with you some of my favorite Asenath moments...
  • The Salvation Army is wonderful. They take people off the street. They feed the homeless. And they put us out. 
  • I don't like animals. I don't like anything that's not going to grow up get a job and move.
  • Name classes what kids want to hear. We don't do a good job of marketing what we do. Everything they do and everything they love is marketed to them but education. 
  • These are not other people's children. These are my children.
  • Over 27 years we’ve only had 4 low birth weight babies born. {INCREDIBLE!}
  • We pay grown ups to think all the time but we don't value that kids can be thinkers too.
  • I don't really want to work in a think tank because I don't think thinkers would really be a lot of fun. 
  • Let college be the default and you can be a plumber later. But now you can keep your own books because you have a degree in business.
Check back tomorrow to read about my second day ever at SXSWedu!


  1. Thanks for sharing! For some of us who can't make all the conventions this has been a great catch up.

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