As we step into spring and out of our last breaks before summer, teachers, TOSAS, and other EdTech enthusiasts are reflecting on lessons learned from CUE ‘17. Along the west coast and the neighboring states, educators flock to Palm Springs every March for our own kind of madness at the largest regional annual tech conference. For many this year, it was a step into a sunny paradise from an unrelenting winter. Stepping out into the dry desert air and seeing the faces of those we usually only get to interact with on Twitter or Voxer set a positive tone for everybody on day one to enjoy another killer conference.
Over the last few years, CUE has really started to take shape, leaving a wide variety of activities to be lead by dedicated volunteers who want to show everybody a good time. The more the organization turns things over to the teachers, the more locked in everybody seems to become.
This year was no exception, as evidenced by lines wrapping around the hallways to get into the most coveted sessions (with strict “NO SITTING ON THE FLOOR” signs keeping everyone on the straight and narrow), and the huge amount of sharing and virtual high-fiving on Instagram. Perhaps the greatest proof of what can happen when you leave it to those who love what they do was displayed on Friday night at CUE Karaoke. This year the organizers were given a dedicated room, which was promptly used to raise the roof and blow out the walls.
Whether people went for inspiring keynotes from the likes of Taylor Mali, Jo Boaler, George Couros, or Cathy Hunt, or some practical hands learning in workshops, or Rockstar Jam Sessions, everybody walked away with something they could bring right back to their districts, schools, and classrooms.
Take the time to reflect on your own experience and sort out what you’re really going to be able to apply to your role as an educator. If you were at CUE, you’ve got a lot to digest and play around with. If you were #NotatCUE, there are still plenty of resources to learn from. Why not start with reflections and feedback from #PodcastEDU, where episodes have already come rolling in from TOSAs Talking Tech and Check This Out, and more are likely on the way.
The sunny oasis of Palm Springs may be behind us for the year, but as we ride off into the sunset, the visions developed and the friendships forged will travel with us into the future!