Posted in CCCWrite, Reflective Writing Club

Reflective Writing Club: Conferencing

So much for keeping up with new blogging prompts! I blame rewriting my dissertation prospectus and preparing myself for an effective job hunt as I work toward the next phase of my career. I really liked the premise of Michelle Pacansky-Brock’s Reflective Writing Club, so I am going to carry on anyway, even though the last prompt in her 6 week cycle was due on March 2nd.

Reflective Writing Club Prompt 2:

  • Discuss the role that attending conferences plays in your professional learning.
  • Reflect on one valuable conference experience you had and discuss why you found it valuable.
  • Let us know what happens once your conference experience is over.
  • Do you share what you’ve learned and, if so, how and with whom?

I love conferences. I would go to much more of them if I could afford to pay for them all. I am sure there are some educators and administrators out there whose employers pay for them to go to conferences, but that has not been the case for me. I think conferences are very valuable learning & professional development experiences that more educators and administrators should be able to go to.

My go-to conference of late has been ISTE . I am SUPER techie and love seeing all the different ways you can implement technology into education. I enjoy keeping myself in “the know” with what is going on with educational technology and the various ways innovators are using it to enhance academic experiences and outcomes for students.

Once the conference is over I internalize the information and move on. I recognize this is not the ideal way to process what has occurred. Ideally, I would love to put what I have learned together in a way to be of use to my colleagues. The trouble I have encountered is that is typically not the practice in my current work environment. That has everything to do with organizational culture which is a whole other topic.  So rather than focus on that, I will make a departure into my own little world where educators get sent to conferences and return to their school sites and present what they have learned. In that alternate universe, I would have viewed ISTE through a site-specific or district-specific lens. I would target things that I knew my school/district needed, or the reasons they sent me in the first place. I would have absorbed everything about those relevant topics that I could have, networked with the right people, and synthesized information. Upon returning to my site/district I would put that information together in a way that was easy to digest. Being a lover of tech, I would more than likely have created a Sway that highlighted all the most relevant information and included links to supporting information. That Sway would be publically available to anyone who had an interest in what I had to share.

Do you get to go to many conferences? If you do go to conferences, how do you share what you have learned with others? Let me know in the comments below! 🙂


Wife, mother, National Board Certified Teacher, doctoral student researching the learner centered teaching practices of fully online K-12 teachers, Elementary Assistant Principal and dog lover. Passionate about educational technology, academic innovation, and redesigning the American educational system.

One thought on “Reflective Writing Club: Conferencing

  1. Priorities! Glad you have finished those important dissertation and job hunt actions so you could join in here. I think it shows your professionalism when you say you want to be “in the know.” So many educators still don’t think about nor learn about the possibilities that our students may need as essential. Kudos to you! ~ Sheri

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