July 1, 2015 by Dr. Robbie Barber
One of the biggest problems at any conference is the running from room to room, listening to great speakers, gathering swag and business cards, getting excited, exhausted and thoroughly overwhelmed. Sound familiar?
It is wonderful that others provide great websites and organized information but honestly, people organize for themselves. (They should.) Yes, you should bookmark and use some of these wonderful sites but you need to learn to organize for YOU!
Here’s how I’ve failed in the past, you may have done so too:
- Put all my notes in Excel, Word, or Evernote
- Created a Symbaloo for all of the links
- Wrote on the back of business cards to help remember why you have the card
- Blogged about favorites
This year, I’m reorganizing. I have so many useful things from #NOTATISTE15 & #GLMASI2015 and frankly, it’s overwhelming. Throughout the conferences, I found many things that I can use or may use so here’s how I’m going to categorize:
- Things I can use TODAY with subcategories like for video production and teaching digital citizenship. (I do those things EVERY day and I really appreciate the additional resources.)
- Things to teach my teachers for #TicklingTech. Short, easy-to-use, with immediate results. A lot of my teachers are afraid of failing at technology (they really aren’t afraid of using it, just feeling flustered). They just need someone to hold their hand.
- Things I want to use or have been thinking about starting – my students are going to learn some sort of coding this year. And, I’m thinking about having some try podcasting.
- Things I want my teachers to try – Mystery Skype or Google Hangouts with other classes. Once I get them started, I expect they will get hooked on their own.
- Organizing some teacher / student resources by content area. Maybe I can convince more teachers to explore more if I give them a starting point.
- Other cool stuff that caught my attention
- Huge websites that others organized materials on. I can always go back to the well and get more information.
I know it sounds like a lot of work to organize the material, but if you don’t, you’ll lose so much information. If you spent 4 days at a conference, it will probably take you at least 2 days to figure out what you have and how to organize. Make the time to organize and find the way that works for you. Virtually or in-person, there’s a lot of information out there.