6 from 27: Reflections on ISTE18

Through various social media platforms, people have already revealed much about this year’s ISTE Conference, though navigating through the abundance of contributions is quite daunting. Therefore, given that ISTE ’18 officially wrapped on June 27, I asked these six questions to 27 folks who attended and/or tweeted using the hashtag #ISTE18.

Here’s some* of what they had to say:

1. What was/were the best session/s you attended?
The Keynotes, ISTE Ignite Sessions, Playgrounds, and Poster Sessions were recognized, as well as the following:
Digital Portfolios & Partnerships
#OneStoryForward: Changing Communities One Story at a Time
Beef Up Critical Thinking: Socratic Seminar and Tech
Saving Democracy: Educator’s Survival Guide to Fake News Across the Curriculum
Bright Ideas for E-Learning Design

2. What session/s do you wish you could/would have attended?
The ISTE Ignite Sessions, Playgrounds, Apple Sessions, and Poster Sessions were on many lists, as were:
The Stupidest Trends in EdTech (And Why They’re Actually Quite Awesome)
Ramping Up Revision: Teaching Targeted Peer Review
Drawing As a Thinking Process – It’s More Than Sketchnoting
Let’s MAKE A Deal!
Top Tech Tips for Busy Administrators

3. What were the memorable social events you attended?
Immerse Yourself in Literacy
EdTech Karaoke
A Night at The Field Museum
ISTE Literacy PLN & Actively Learn Social Event
Ed Tech Poetry Slam
Classcraft’s Questathon
Flipgrid’s Speakeasy
ISTE Midwest States Reception
Discovery’s event @ Spin
Canvas’ event on the River Walk
Facebook Social Mixer

4. What are some memorable new tools/products/ resources you learned about?
Actively Learn
Adobe Spark
Audioforslides.com
Badgr
Bloomz
Bloxels Edu
Bretford’s latest iteration of its TechGuard Connect®
Canvas LMS
CK 12 Foundation
Cross Braining
Crio
Cultivate World Literacy
Dynamic Learning Project
Future Ready Leadership
Google Science Journal
ISTE EdTech Advisor
Jing Screen Captures
MATLAB Coding Robots
Otter Voice Notes
Pi-Top Computing
21 Things Project
VEX coding platform
zSpace AR/VR Laptop

5. If you attend ISTE 2019, what will you do differently?
“Rather than be on a panel, I’m going to organize a panel of educators whose voices I want to amplify.” –@pronovost

“I would like to attend more content-specific sessions. Science sessions that were not posters were few and far between.” –@liz1544

“Try to limit commitments and do fewer things more deeply.” –@andrewtwallace

“Perhaps I’d focus on less of the sessions and do more informal, intentional connection in the hallway/charging stations.” –@adewitt2

“Get to sessions earlier. I was blocked out of too many because I didn’t show up early enough.” –@MrKennyEdTech

“Force work to send more of my team!” –@Mathletics_MW

6. Anything else you would like to add?
“ISTE is the one event that opened my eyes to the breadth of education in the United States and overseas. I am continuously astonished by the growing number of amazing educators in one physical space at the same time. The network of professionals that I have created from this conference keeps me encouraged, optimistic, and hopeful about the future of education in America.” –@leontynesjr

“I had the honor of working on both the new ISTE Certification and ISTE U offerings, which launched at the conference to excitement and interest. Cannot wait to see the impact and reach of these projects in the coming year!” –@NancyeBlackEdu

“As educators, we have a consistent uphill battle in our profession; however, together we can make great strides forward.” –@andycinek

“Would like to see less “bells and whistles” and more on building student capacity. Just because students can do something doesn’t mean they’re getting something out of it (learning-wise).” –@mrtwhalen

5 educators share their #ISTE18 experiences

“The quality of educators and their energy was inspiring. It’s great to be in contact with so many people with such a passion for education.” –@c_johnson007

“Was the first ISTE in a new role and company but 11th overall. Always a great time to see friends and acquaintances and catch up. One of my favorite weeks every year.”
–@RyanKeag12

“Impromptu conversations with educators were a priceless addition to my conference experience.” –@chemichall

Beyond the above information, participants revealed that they made several new relationships. The total number of new relationships these 27 people made equaled more than 1,000! Expand that number and follow the #EduAllStars who shared their responses:
@AggiesalterITS
@MrsRubinoELA
@edtechcaitlin
@andycinek
@Mathletics_MW
@jenwagner
@c_johnson007
@MrKennyEdTech
@wasse
@adewitt2
@pronovost
@KristinCHarr
@NancyeBlackEdu
@lauranylen
@teachingfactor
@henrythiele
@RyanKeag12
@MrAguina
@chemichall
@mrtwhalen
@andrewtwallace
@synergyined
@liz1544
@ELAPizzoStyle
@NeelDesaiBA
@leontynesjr
@MrSteinbergHHS

*The responses were provided by those who took my survey; please forgive any errors/inaccuracies.

Interested in the complete outcomes of the survey? Message me!
Email: kellymhealey@gmail.com
Twitter: @kwildehealey
LinkedIn: Kelly Wilde Healey

Kelly Wilde Healey

About the Author:

Eileen Belastock is director of technology for Mount Greylock Regional School District in Williamstown, Mass., and a board member of MassCUE, an ISTE Affiliate.

Dr. Cathy Collins has worked as a library media specialist for 15+ years. Currently, she is a library media specialist and China exchange coordinator for Sharon (MA) Public Schools. She has served on MassCUE’s Board as PD Chair since 2015. She received a “Teachers for Global Classrooms” fellowship from the U.S. State Dept. in 2014 and is the recipient of AASL’s Intellectual Freedom Award (2014). She was named an MSLA “Super Librarian” in 2015, and also received the HNA/Primary Source “Teacher of the Year” award in 2015. She joined ISTE’s PLN STEM Leadership Team in 2017.

Rayna Freedman is a fifth-grade teacher at the Jordan/Jackson Elementary School in Mansfield, Mass. She has taught grades 3-5 and is an ITS. She is a member of the MassCUE Board of Directors and has been presenting at the annual conference since 2010. She is a BrainPOP certified educator, Flipgrid Ambassador, Fablevision Ambassador, and advocate for teaching digital citizenship in the classroom. She serves on the DESE Digital Literacy and Computer Science Standards Panel.

Kelly Healey is an education consultant assisting in the process of modernizing education, increasing student achievement, and moving schools forward. Throughout her career, she served as a K-12 classroom teacher, dean of students, district ESL specialist, and operated in multiple capacities as an education consultant.

Kimberly Zajac is a speech/language pathologist in Norton (MA) Public Schools. She is a board member of MassCUE and serves as co-leader of the MassCUE SLP and Special Educator Special Interest Group.