Monday, March 13, 2017

TDSB Google Camp 4.0 SOLD OUT!

So, I didn’t win the Demo Slam, the crown nor bragging rights for a year. Competition and talent was fierce but I was glad to be a contender. That was the end of a long, mind-blowing, adventurous learning day.  

TDSB Google Camp is a great conference for TDSB educators by TDSB educators looking to further develop a positive growth mindset, build a Professional Learning Network while leveraging technology like Google Apps. An opportunity to seek out like-minded educators or not and engage in discussion to push ideas to new limits or create new ones altogether.

There was a strong Elementary panel presence in both presenters and attendees, while the Secondary panel is growing with teachers sharing their best practices leveraging GAFE apps. This year, there were a few sessions hosted by Administrators leading through example; for both teachers and administrator on the effective use of ‘working smart’ with various GAFE apps.

The morning began with the hustle and bustle with last minute set up of Thank You cards for presenters; teachers, administrators, board-level and IT members. The registration table line-up was moving smoothly as over 500 educators picked up their lanyards leading to the hack-your-badge table, a light breakfast snack and photo booth to entertain while building memories.  

I meet with my Social Media Crew, a talented team who were always ready to provide support Diana Hong, Shawn Spencer, Mahfuza Rahman, Gerry Corrigan and Tim Barker. Throughout the day we Tweeted out from the @TDSB_TLT #tdsbcamp account capturing the learning, sharing, and ‘a-ha’ moments. We were able to capture a few sessions and live stream them via Periscope for educators unable to attend, to watch from the comfort of their homes.

Keynote @JesseBrown asks us to consider disruption as a positive, and that as educators we need to provide students with experiences where they “build an array of skills to surf thru chaos.” He challenged us to consider how we might apply the strategy of how “Google built failure into their model” into our own classrooms. How might we harness passions in what we do? Perhaps looking further into providing opportunities for passion projects Google 80/20. All of which I believe is a part of my class learning community but so much more growth is needed for consistency and addressing the boundaries (if needed at all) of ideas/resources. Jesse Brown ended his keynote with “I wish you wonderful failures.”

I was proud to present during the second session with Kamla Rambaran focussing on Student Voice: ePortfolios using Google Sites. A great topic, yes, but that was not the highlight. Two Grade 6 students honoured us by co-presenting as they gave educators a tour of their ePortfolio; what they get from reflecting on their learning and how they will use this to continue making plans toward achieving their set goals, both academic and personal. From here, students provided support to our guests in setting up their own Google Sites. I believe that an integral part of student voice is provide students opportunities to speak to educators and be leaders in discussions or responding to questions on how we can all learn from one another. This was the proudest part of my day: stepping aside and letting the students step up.

The biggest challenge of the day was selecting which of the sessions to attend which is why I, myself reviewed the periscope sessions over the days that followed Google Camp. This was a wonderful way to get a glimpse of the sessions offered throughout the day. But to highlight a few, sessions ranged from beginners using Google Keep with Kate Miles to being Innovative Entrepreneurs with Arianna Lambert to Digital Breakouts with Larissa Aradj to effective Gmail Workflow with David Hann.  

As the day went on, educators made their way back to the auditorium for closing activities including prizes for high attendance from a school, school Google Camp spirit and a randomizer app to select winners from the audience.

But, what better way to end a day of learning, being overloaded with new information to take back into our classrooms to further explore than a Demo Slam! Each of the Demo Slammers pitched a 3-minute tech demo, while getting the audience all hyped up and excited was a success. This year, I put my name forth and took part in my first Demo Slam... I was nervous, stumbled and then with a bit of help from the audience I just had fun with it!

The impromptu challenge put upon, Peter Singh, CTO was to select the winner. With grace and much audience noise the Demo Slam Queen Larissa Aradj was announced!

With that, they day came to a close and all the ‘behind-the-scenes’ Google Camp crew members packed away equipment wrapping up another successful TDSB Google Camp. Looking forward to TDSB Google Camp 5.0.

Thank you Kevin Bradbeer, Carlo DiFelice, Shelley Lowry, Marlena Rivett, Lisa Weaver and TDSB_IT Services for the opportunity to be a part of the Google Camp crew and all of the awesomeness that made this day great!

A shout-out to the TDSB Google Camp Committee I was proud to be a part of: Lucy Chan, Holly Sharpe, Iniyal Hryhorczuk, Maleka Kaderbhai and Lisa Rubini-Laforest for making the day even more special with your support and attention to detail.

1 comment:

  1. I loved your slam! I've been using it to make gifs left, right, and centre; it's a little addictive.