I just arrived at the Bloggers' Cafe. It's a cool place, people sitting around talking, reading, and writing - and most likely learning. Sounds like a classroom, doesn't it? It's super informal and I bet people are getting something valuable out of it.

While I think about that, I think about the different personalities here. Like the classroom, there's a wide variety of people. There are popular "kids" who are leading the conversations and having people search them out, there are the shy ones who are sitting by themselves, and there are people in the middle. There are people a lot more outgoing in these types of situations and are able to just walk up to people and say hi. Here, I'm not sure if people are working or not and I'm not sure I want to interrupt them. There certainly are some familiar faces and I may have to introduce myself soon before I continue sitting here like a loser.

Do our students feel the same way in our classrooms? Are there students sitting quietly in the back with a lot of good stuff to share? I bet there are. The question is, how do we get them to step up and join the conversations?

Just a thought.


Friday, June 27, 2008 | | 0 comments »

Okay, I leave in the morning for San Antonio which will certainly be one of the more exciting parts of the summer. Obviously, I hope to learn a ton, but I also hope to have a great time and meet some fantastic people.

Packing is basically complete and the appropriate chargers/plugs/headphones/cords are all set (I hope).

I'll be arriving in SA around 11:00 and then will be driving to a relative's house where I'll be staying. My cousin and I will be heading to the RiverWalk Saturday evening. If you're down there, send a DM via Twitter (or email me: chadlehman@gmail.com) and maybe things will work out so I can meet you.

I would have love to attend EduBloggerCon on Saturday, but timing won't allow that to happen - oh well! I do know there will be other things I'll miss out on as well.

The rest of the week is pretty open other than a short stint helping Scholastic and earning a quick $100 on Monday morning.

Here's my conference planner. Are you attending any of these sessions? I've got quite a bit of overlap (I wish I was cloned) so I'll be missing out on a lot. However, maybe some of you will be attending sessions I won't be and you can share the info. If you will be attending with me, let me know.

It's Been One Week...

Sunday, June 22, 2008 | 0 comments »

The title of this post is not only a line from a great BNL song, but it's the beginning of a phrase I've been saying a lot lately.

It's been one week since school has let out.
It's been one week of hauling the kids everywhere.
It's been one week of more time at school, even though everyone else wasn't.
It's been one week of eager anticipation of NECC (with one more week to go!)
It's been one week of crazy weather - from hot to stormy to cool to sunny.
It's been one week of very little tech, which has really surprised me.
It's been one week of many where my kids are going to drive me nuts - in good and bad ways.
It's been one week of many accidents in the house by Gabby.
It's been one week with a lot of bike riding - I'm glad we live close to many activities.
It's been one week too many without a new blog post.

It's been several weeks since I've written a post, but a friendly reminder from Mister Teacher about an upcoming Carnival of Education prompted a little blogging. I can't quite focus on summer fun yet (NECC and a trip to NYC) because we have one week of school left. Things should be rather interesting/hectic/crazy during the next 5 days. It's the time of the year when students are getting excited about summer vacation, teachers are trying to wrap up last minute grading, and everyone is looking forward to great weather (at least those of us in Wisconsin). This is often a time when teachers are giving end of the year assessments to find out what their students have learned throughout the year. In many cases, teachers are really happy with the progress students are made, but they rarely think about the progress they have made themselves. I've thought about my learning recently and have put together this list of my end of the school year reflections. Feel free to comment on my reflections and feel free to add your own.

1. Whether or I like it or not, I still like to learn new things.
2. Web 2.0 tools have been a fantastic addition to my life, both personally and professionally.
3. I like del.icio.us personally, and del.icio.us has made adding links to my school web page much easier. I do know that I'm not using it as effectively as I could.
4. Twitter is fun! (If you Twitter, follow me!)
5. My excitement about technology has continued and hopefully will always continue.
6. Many people I work with truly are in it for the kids.
7. Unfortunately, not all of them are.
8. I already knew this, but recent events have confirmed -- people do not like change.
9. I've made a lot of new friends online this year and am really looking forward to meeting some of them at NECC this year.
10. I'm still bad at jumping into projects and not finishing them. I have to work on this.
11. Classes and teachers all over the country want to collaborate and learn, this was very evident during my State Project.
12. There are more educators willing to share their knowledge than you'd think. The web is an ideal place to meet these fantastic people.
13. My comfort level at my current school is going to change quite a bit next year with a new principal on board and several different teachers on our staff. Hopefully, things will still be good.
14. In general, life isn't too bad!

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