NCaect now NCTIES (conference thoughts)

Well, as always, I had good intentions to blog throughout the conference. Instead, I spent time talking with board members, feature presenters, and conference participants. There was a great buzz throughout the 3 days of conference.

My first great experience at the 2008 NCaect conference was going to the Charlotte airport to pick up Leslie Fisher and Deneen Frazier-Bowen. These featured speakers had never met each other but in a matter of minutes had made several connections and were talking like old friends. These women are at the top of their field so it was an honor just to sit back and listen! Deneen spent the first 2 days of conference in character (Edy, Julio, Maria, and Joanne-their blog is http://learningconditions.blogspot.com) going around and talking with participants as well as a special trip to Concord Middle School to talk with students. Julio managed to surprise Leslie during her preconference– it was about 3 minutes into conversation before Leslie realized that it was Deneen. She was not the only one fooled!

A big thanks to Kevin Honeycutt for letting me take part in his preconference– a totally unplanned moment but fun! As he was sharing Twitter with the group, I sent a tweet in reply to him which spurred him to ask me to speak. I almost forgot how much I enjoy presenting at conferences.

Finally, the EduBloggerCon mediated by Sheryl Nussbaum-Beach and David Warlick was the beginning of a great conversation! I am amazed at the number of people who have decided to follow me now on Twitter. It really is about making the connections and building the network. These are people I would never have had the opportunity to bounce ideas off of or just talk shop. We talked about issues regarding students in the 21st century and how to get teachers to get on board.

Big thanks to all the teachers, administrators, directors, and vendors who made the conference a success. Scott Smith, the new NCTIES president, was awesome as this year’s conference chair! Only 363 days until the NCTIES conference in Raleigh!

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