I’m not a big fan of conferences. Sports conferences – besides maybe the Mountain West Conference – are okay, but professional conferences is where I find my contention. They are expensive and often in big, stuffy hotels and convention centers. A lot of information is presented but much of it is overly-general and not always helpful. At the conclusion of a professional association’s conference a few years ago, the president of the organization explained “the goal of this event isn’t for you to use every piece of advice you hear in each session you attend. If you can incorporate one or two concepts in the way you run your office, I think that’s a success.”
On one hand, that sounds a bit defeatist. But, on the other, it’s practical and realistic. You’re not going to change the world every time you come back from a conference, but you’ll more than likely come up with a few new ideas you can use.
This is how I feel about the vast array of tools we’ve explored in this class. Personally, I think QR codes are silly – nobody in my sphere of influence uses them on a regular basis. However, that’s not to say they couldn’t be used effectively in school settings. I especially like the idea of them being used in a K-12 or even college library.
Screencasting (http://www.screencast-o-matic.com/) Snapguides (www.snapguide.com), and LiveBinders (http://www.livebinders.com/), however, are all tools I think I could use effectively as an educator.
So, as the semester progresses, I’m sure I’ll continue to learn about tools I like okay and tools I really like. My challenge to myself is to begin incorporating these tools into practice on a weekly basis in my job.