The Silver State Technology conference was wonderful. Any time you get to meet other individuals interested in things you are is a great event. Even if people don’t agree on how to implement technology, it’s always exciting to discuss ideas and learn with others. Friday night opened words from Dr. Jesse Welsh Assistant Superintendent of Curriculum and Professional Development for the Clark County School District. One thing he shared that I was so happy to see was a screenshot of an article about the digital divide that persists in Maine despite their statewide laptop program. Dr. Welsh shared this not to discourage technology use, but rather to remind us, that educational technology will only perpetuate traditional teaching styles without proper professional development and teacher support. This isn’t the article he shared, but this is a story from NPR about the laptop program.
Admittedly, I called it an early night and didn’t get stay for the full friday night event. I was nervous about the keynote. This was the first time I would be keynoting to an audience this large, there were over 150 people registered for the event. About a year ago I presented my keynote to some of the teachers at the Norwalk La Mirada Unified School District, but this was a much bigger event. The next day I woke up early to get prepped for the big keynote. I went in to do a soundcheck and make sure all the tech was working because I wanted to make sure nothing would get in my way of sharing my message of TechEsteem. I won’t spoil the keynote, because hopefully you’ll get to see it live one day, but in super short summary I talk about educational technology and how despite challenges, we can harness our TechEsteem to persevere. People who believe in TechEsteme believe we can learn how to use technology for the betterment of education and that our learning can grow and develop over time. True to from, despite the sound check, the sound went out on one of my videos. It could have been a horrible moment, but I just ran off stage and turned up the volume. Kyle also came in with the assist too. It was a #BetterTogether moment for sure. Surprisingly it felt like a planned moment in the keynote, but it wasn’t. Although it was a nice moment to model what TechEsteem can look like.
The event was a great success for Nevada CUE and it was such a pleasure to work with the amazing teachers of Nevada. I’ve always loved visiting the state, I even got married there almost three years ago, and after the amazing conference I have so many new reasons to visit the state. I stayed in the city and enjoyed relaxing on Sunday for making the drive home. When I got home, I unpacked and went to sleep pretty early because I was so tired.The next day I woke up to several texts and messages making sure I was ok. I groggily responded not fully understanding what was going on until after I turned on the NPR Up First Podcast and heard the news.
When it comes to what happened in Las Vegas, well it’s such a complex topic and I know no matter what I type it won’t be enough. I do believe that our country can do more to prevent gun violence and help victims of gun violence. I just hope I’ll get to see that happen. I couldn’t go give blood, (less than a year old tattoo), but what I could do, did and continue to do, is call my government officials to let them know I believe this is a problem worth addressing.