At the Texas Computer Education Association's 29th annual conference earlier this month, educators heard an impassioned plea to open their students' eyes to the world around them--and were urged to change their approach to instruction to take full advantage of 21st-century learning tools.

Despite the gloomy economy, TCEA reported a record attendance of 8,500 educators from all over the country. Hundreds of exhibitors also showcased their latest ed-tech products and services in an exhibit hall that boasted more than 900 individual booths.

The conference opened Feb. 4 with a dynamic, student-produced video demonstrating how technology is transforming education and empowering kids at


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