Thursday, October 9, 2008

Professional Development=Professional Progress

"Quick hurry get your submissions in" that was the theme of many twitter and plurk postings earlier this week. Why? The National Education Computing Conference "NECC" was accepting submissions for the conference in 2009 in Washington DC. Many of my friends, colleagues, and professional learning network "PLN" friends were scrambling to get their last minute submissions in. Most are simply hoping to get at least one accepted while others, myself included, have multiple sessions we would like to have accepted. I also want to add that my friend Dr. Mark Wagner has very insightful take on the submission process and his experiences with it.

During the time in which I was completing my submission I could not help but reflect on many things associated with it. The first and perhaps most important was that I initiated a proposal to conduct a session in which I would moderate a panel on the value of having a PLN. I posted an query on both twitter and plurk asking if anybody in my PLN would be interested in participating on the panel. The response was beyond amazing. I had many who said yes, some even felt honored to share the stage with me, and those that did not want to be on the stage offered support by doing things like moderating a backchannel chat, or operating a camera to live stream the session.

Unfortunately, the format only permits me to have 6 additional participants on stage, but if my submission is accepted I think demonstrating the real value of having a good PLN will be easy to show. Audience members will be able to see the level of support one gets when they not only have a good PLN, but are actively participating with their network. As it stands I may have fellow educators connected from as far away as Europe. I am hopeful to have several continents represented to further emphasize the value of the network. I can only humbly think that without technology and tools such as twitter and plurk, I would not be the educator I am today. I am certain I would have less than 10% of the resources and support I get from my PLN. This is my preferred type of professional development. It also emphasizes the need for teachers to be involved and to attend conferences in order to establish and build a PLN

I have posted links to all three sessions I have submitted and hope to not only see many or all of you at NECC, I hope you will either be able to attend one of my sessions or contribute to the session on having a good PLN. Feel free to post comments and share your thoughts and opinions on this. If possible I will include them in my presentation at the CLMS/CLHS/CUE Technology Conference in Monterey, CA this December.

Build It Better: Project Based Learning From The Ground Up With Google Sketchup
[Formal Session : BYOL] (43610829)

Teacher, Teach Thyself-Make Your Own PD PLaN [Formal Session : Panel] (43720659)

We Are Rolling: Film Production And Its' Pedagogical Application In Education. [Workshop : Hands-on] (43610897)

1 comment:

BlueU said...

Sometimes I feel like I didn't know what teaching was until I started to establish my PLN online. I first discovered Plurk and Twitter just this past July while attending the High School's New Face Conference in Ellicottville, NY. I have gotten more resources from my PLN in the past 3 months than I have in my 20 years of teaching. There is also that "virtual" bond which is so important to me as a person.
I hope you get to do all of your presentations, because YOU are an important part of my PLN and I thank you for that!
DianeA in Western NY