Thursday, December 17, 2015

Ties Take Away 2015

Ties Take Aways 2015

This time of year brings lots of excitement for students nearing Winter Break. There is excitement in the air for teachers attending annual conferences too. I was fortunate to present at the TIES conference in Minneapolis this week. The great thing about presenting is the opportunity to attend sessions the day of the event! There was so much information shared. Here are my most valuable take aways from the day.

3D Printers

Thanks to Lisa Reed and Jeremy Engebretson for sharing their journey with 3d printers. I have been nervous about incorporating 3d printers into our Makerspace. With the help of knowledgeable colleagues (from sessions and the playground - shout out to Kelly Iverson- Egge) I felt equipped to begin TinkerCad with our group of 5th graders the next day.  The big message from these people was it is the design process that should be focused on, not the printing. That makes it easier for me to wrap my head around. Thank you! The following are some resources you may find helpful in your 3D printer journey:
Maker Newsletter Sign-up (Maker Faire)
Students using TinkerCad

Tammy Worcester's Tech Tips, Tricks and Tools (

I loved Tammy's presentations in Evernote! I have been using Evernote for some time and find it useful. A very useful tip she shared with us pertained specifically to me as a media specialist. I love the fact that we can add images, citations and all, in Google docs. The filter to find Creative Commons images will be so useful with my classes conducting research. Thank you! Some more great websites shared by Tammy are below:
Favorite Non-Educational Tools 
Lark - Health and fitness “coach” - free app
      7 minute workout!
       free app   
Plan To Eat - A Meal and shopping planner

Digital Citizenship 

Deanna Kovash shared her Digital Citizenship Resources at a Poster Table not too far from mine. I am so glad I stopped by. Her handout had some fun websites. One I can't wait to look into is Creatubbles

Distance Learning

At another poster table I reviewed many distance learning opportunities. Wow! I even interacted with someone at the History Center. The Center for Interactive Learning and Collaboration List is quite extensive. I encourage you to check it out. The lesson here is to be sure to stop by the poster sessions. You never know when you'll discover something new - or remind yourself of existing opportunities.

Connecting with Colleagues

A conference would not be complete without connecting with others in my personal learning network or people whose work I follow. It was fun bumping into Doug Johnson and chatting a bit with Brian from Mackin. Of course, our keynote speaker, George Couros, was fun to listen to and had an inspiring message. George reminded us that "Innovation often begins... with empathy." I want to thank everyone for sharing their innovation with me and look forward to sharing what I learned with our students! Happy Holidays!

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