Saturday, October 17, 2009

The Conference Buffet - What Do You Want To Eat?

I spent Thursday and Friday presenting and watching presentations at the ACTEM 09 conference in Augusta, Maine. Like any good conference there was a large selection of interesting presentations going on simultaneously. It was difficult to decide which sessions to attend. It was a lot like going to buffet of great ideas.

On my way to the conference yesterday morning, I had the brainstorm of picking a goal for the day (not a novel concept, but something I'd never applied to conference attendance). I had two goals for the day. The first goal was to observe how professional speakers organize their presentations and work through their presentations. The second goal was to hear the ideas that they have regarding education. Therefore, I chose to attend sessions conducted by Marco Torres and Wes Fryer. These guys are true pros at conference speaking and are thought-leaders in the field of education.

Overall, going into the day with a game plan yielded a better learning experience for the day than I might have had if I had just hap-hazardly chosen workshops.

A Video Overview of the American Revolution

Earlier this week The US History Teachers Blog posted a good video overview of the American Revolution. What I like about this video is that it includes some brief introduction material and doesn't just jump in at Lexington and Concord. The video is embedded below.

Applications for Education
I wish I had seen this video a couple of weeks ago when my students were reviewing for a test on the American Revolution. As was pointed out on The US History Teacher's blog, short video clips and discussing about them with students is often much more effective than playing an hour long video and telling kids to "pay attention."