Reflections on ECOO 2009

ECOO 2009 was an amazing conference – no question about that. Hats off to @brendasherry and the conference organization team.

One of the things I noticed this year was the amount of pre ECOO conversations (& hype). Twitter was buzzing with anticipation, discussion and people organizing to connect at the event. Twitter was the perfect vehicle to host the shared discussion and organization.

My learning opportunities included:

  • Understanding Digital Kids – Ian Jukes
  • Adobe ePortfolio software – S. Addler
  • Why Ban Them – Use Them – Paul Hatala
  • Understanding Social Media and Why it Matters – Alec Couros
  • Rethinking Teaching and Learning in a Networked World – Alec Couros
  • 2 sessions of duty at the OSAPAC booth

Learning Highlights:

  • the brains of students today are wired differently
  • we read based on a Z pattern, today’s students read in an F pattern
  • colour is read before black and white
  • pictures, colour, sound and video are all processed before text
  • Think about the impact of this on print, textbook, and web design
  • How do we use this information to improve learning?
  • Adobe ePortfolio is a powerful package that certainly lives up to expectations – lots of potential in K-12
  • iPods in the Classroom, effective use includes
    • internet research
    • collaboration (e.g. First Class)
    • Evernote and delicious for bookmarking
    • Google Docs and gflash as study aids
    • calendar and alarms for time management
    • to do lists
    • polling/voting
    • podcasting
  • many concerns fall into the student behaviour area – deal with the behaviours, not ban the devices
  • capitalize on equipment that many students already own
  • Understanding Social media
    • great sessions that challenged participants to think about key issues
    • What defines offensive content?
    • Who is it offensive too?
    • Cyber bullying
    • Real time data, valuable in search and context
    • What does friendship and community mean in today’s world?
    • There is definitely a shift in today’s world, including a blurring of private and public space
    • A new key element in this environment is reputation management
    • We need to understand what our kids are looking at and leverage new tools effectively in the educational environment
    • We need to build trust.

We had excellent attendance at the  OSAPAC booth with quality conversations about provincially licensed software, challenges teachers experience, needs, potential future directions.

The conference is well structured so there is plenty of opportunity to connect and learn outside of the main sessions too. Highlights for me were the in depth conversations with Alec Couros, Doug Peterson and Zoe Pipe concerning the ins and outs of copyright on the web, content filtering and social networking tools to improve student learning and staff development. All of these topics are relevant, complex and interesting. The conversations were rich and without time constraints. I really appreciated these opportunities and the valuable learning that happened as a result.

All of the meal times and hallway connections rounded out a great conference experience. I am already looking forward to ECOO 2010.

Related Reading about ECOO 2009

@msjweir   ECOO 2009!
@dougpete   The Power of Conferences
@redfearn   Inspire Connect Teach – ecoo 2009
@brendasherry   ECOO 2009 Reflections
@aliringbull   Mind Blown at ECOO in a Good Way
@marclijour    Impressed by ECOO 2009
ECOO feedback and planning wiki: ECOO Connections

~ Mark

One thought on “Reflections on ECOO 2009”

  1. Hi Mark,
    I agree that ZBP is one of the most fascinating and inspiring people to chat with about technology in the classroom. She is a great model of learning the media first, in order to be a responsible mentor to her class. The whole conference was great, but Zoe’s lessons were of the most value to me.

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