Thoughts on ECOO 2010

Long time no blog!  It’s been a crazy fall, with little time for reflection and lots of action as ECOO 2010 came and went like a whirlwind.

I have to extend my deepest thanks to the committee of great teachers that I worked with this year, and in case you missed our closing keynote please note them here:

Special Events: Becky Rouse, Ron Millar, Susan Watt and Jamie Reaburn Weir
Equipment: Mary-Kay Goindi with help from Andrew Cloutier
Vendors:  Natasha Skerritt, Tanya Morton and Mike Anderson
Looking after Presentations, Online Planner, PDF Planner, QR Codes on our Meeting room signs, and our online magazine:  Cal Armstrong
Treasurer: Harry Niezen
Office and Registration: Valia Reinsalu, Zoe Branigan-Pipe
Speakers and Minds on Media:  Peter Skillen
Webmaster: Andrew Forgrave
Communications and Design Diva: Kat Goodale

It’s wonderful to be part of the success of this conference, especially since ECOO gave me such a wonderful start in my own journey in using technology in my classroom.  I started programming with MicroWorlds Junior with my Grade 1/2’s in 2004 after meeting @peterskillen at an ECOO Conference.  I started my first blog with my students in 2006  after beginning a global project with iearn.org – again, something that I learned about at ECOO.  I even ended up at OISE to complete my M.Ed in order to keep that learning going.  Although I never saw myself as a presenter type of person, in order to get my free day at ECOO I shared my learning with other teachers and it seemed to go well.

I see this happening at ECOO today, and with the addition of Social Media the connections seem to be stronger, more authentic and more supportive than ever before.  There were so many new presenters this year, some of whom had been inspired by their attendance last year to ‘give it a try’ — AWESOME!

@snbeach commented on the energy and the understanding of our participants, saying it’s a nice feel here in Ontario with these educators that ‘get it’.  I agree.  I want to learn more about how to continue to build that leadership and I’ll be looking at the work of @snbeach to help understand how networks and communities work…and to find a way to help.   It was also such a thrill to have David Thornburg at ECOO, since I have such respect for what he’s done for educational technology over many years.

I also need to thank @peterskillen for another great year of Minds on Media at ECOO!  It was wonderful to feel a great vibe as I walked through and saw so many engaged teachers learning new things, constucting artefacts and enjoying some extended time with experts…something that is so precious and hard to find these days!

The only drawback for me as facilitator is that I didn’t get around to as many of your sessions as I would have liked, nor did I get the opportunity to share my learning with you…but I think I may already have some interesting ideas for next year…so stay tuned!  I’m looking back over the #ecoo2010 tweets today and catching up on some of what you were learning!

Thanks for coming to ECOO!  The Conference Committee wanted you to be inspired by our friends from the US and other provinces, but to be blown away by our local heroes…Ontario teachers, who are doing amazing things…I hope that happened for you!

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