The Three Rivers Educational Technology Conference was such an overwhelming success in 2012 we had to find a larger space. We’re moving down the road to the Four Points Sheraton. Put November 19 and 20 on your calendar. Look for more details about keynote speakers and opportunities to sponsor the conference.
The 2012 conference was a great success! Over 370 people attended this year. The conference became a national event as two graduate students from UCLA traveled across the country to “Connect to a Digital World.” This year’s conference provided opportunities not only for educators, but for students to learn and teach. This year’s conference included students as workshop leaders, experts in the Digital Playground, and session presenters. Through the Sprout Fund TRETC added the Spark Creativity Zone showcasing some of the best projects in Western Pennsylvania.
Brian Waniewski, the Managing Director at the Institute of Play in New York City, kicked off the pre-conference by sharing the successful use of Game-based Learning at the Quest to Learn schools in New York City and Chicago. The Quest to Learn School in NYC is a public school serving 370 students with a mix of genders and race. 40% of the students receive free or reduced lunch and over 25% of the students receive special services. The school includes a series of game designers who work with the content specialists, the teachers. The project originated based on research that the MacArthur Foundation funded investigating the use of digital media and learning.
According to Brian there are a series of design principles that guide the school:
- Everyone is a participant;
- Challenge is constant;
- Feedback is immediate;
- Learning happens by doing;
- Everything is interconnected
- It kind of feels like play
Gary Stager, the keynote speaker, challenged the full-day conference. Gary shared his vision for K-12 education that brings engagement and intensity to classroom instruction. According to Gary teachers should create “memories.” It’s what the student remembers about the learning process that will remain. Modern knowledge construction is inseparable from computing. Gary shared a variety of examples of kids who are disseminating their knowledge in ways we need to take note.
For those who missed the conference or for anyone who wants to learn more about the presentations, here’s a copy of the presentation or a video capture from a variety of this year’s presenters:
- Nikki Navta – Game Design – How/When/Where/Why Should it be Used in the Classroom
- Aaron Sams – Flipping the Classroom
The 2012 conference is scheduled for November 14 at the The Regional Learning Alliance in Marshall Township. The theme for 2012 will be Connecting to a Digital World. Keep on top of TRETC with Twitter: #tretc2012.
This year’s TRETC will start with a pre-conference on November 13 . Here’s the schedule for the pre-conference:
12:30-3:30 PM CoSN Leadership Workshop for District Leaders
12:30-3:30 PM Hands-Workshops on App Development/Scratch led by students from South Fayette
4:00-5:00 PM Main Event – Keynote by Brian Waniewski, Managing Director at Institute of Play
5:00-7:00 PM Networking and Interactive Product Gallery
Gary Stager will be the keynote speaker for this year’s full-day conference. This year’s conference will include presentations on the following:
- Flipped Learning (with Aaron Sams)
- Instructional Strategies for using Games K-12
- Blended Learning
- Digital Media
- Students Speaking out about STEAM
- Applications, such as Edmodo, Google Sketchup
- Technology for Students
- Horizon Report
- Career Exploration
- CMU projects, including the Gigapan Project and Hummingbird & Finch
- Build Your Own TV Studio
- Using Technology to Differentiate Instruction
- Digital Coaching
- Questylinz: A Summer Game
Here’s the planned schedule for the full-day conference:
7:00AM – 8:00AM: Registration
8:00AM – 8:30AM – Opening Remarks
8:30AM – 9:30AM – Keynote Speaker: Gary Stager
9:30AM – 10:30AM – Breakout session A
10:30AM – 11:10AM – Digital Playground
11:10AM – 12:10PM – Breakout session B
12:15PM – 1:30PM – Lunch (dedicated vendor time and business meeting for technology coordinators and library media coordinators.)
1:30PM – 2:30PM – Breakout sessions C
2:30PM – 2:55PM – Digital Playground Sessions
2:55PM – 3:30PM – Closing Activities
- Time to Reflect
- Raffle and Act 48 forms
Read an article form the student online magazine at Freedom High School:
Here's a blurb from the article:
Facebook is now being incorporated into classes at Freedom… sort of.
In recent weeks, various teachers throughout the high school have been experimenting with a website known as Edmodo. Edmodo – a site that mimics the appearance of Facebook – allows teachers to more easily collaborate with students by sharing homework assignments, educational media and access grades and class notices. The site was discovered after multiple Freedom teachers attended the Three Rivers Educational Technology Conference in November.