It dawned on me that there were a couple of people I hung out with at the conference that I didn't mention in my last posting. You always take your friends for granted!
I wanted to be sure to thank Alan Forsythe for his wonderful presentation and comrade-ship at the conference. Alan is a very hard working tech teacher who has created his own curriculum from scratch using applied technology stations and information technology stations built around themes. His most dramatic unit is on aeronautics and relies heavily on NASA for inspiration. To find out more about Alan and his work head to http:// magnetmiddle.org and go to the 8th grade team page. He is the 8th grade tech teacher at the awesome Scofield Magnet Middle School in Stamford, CT. (OK...I brag on that school because it is my second home and where my son attends 7th grade.)
There were many other Scofield teachers and administrators at the conference which is a testament to their professionalism and openess to new ideas. It is tough to stay enthused about concepts like "constructivism" and "brain based learning" in this testing driven educational climate. Hang in there guys.
Another person who I was glad to re-connect with was Joe Mastrocola, a technology integration specialist and coordinator from Sommerville, MA. I often tell Joe we are living parallel lives. He is always willing to volunteer his valuable time to support the technology strand at the NELMS conference. He is always one step ahead of the crowd in his educational technology thinking. I recommended that he read Malcolm Gladwell's Tipping Points and Blink as I know he would "get it" if he did. Check out one of his websites at.... http://www.teacherweb.com/ma/eea/educationenlightenment/
It is great to know that there are people like Alan, Joe and the Scofield staff out there, in the trenches, helping kids and teachers.
All the best..... Jim :-)