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This Week in My Google Life


      Last weekend, starting on the 2nd of November, I began a serious week of Google in Education Activities.  On Saturday, I presented on two topics at the RSSD Ninja Academy in Texas.  I was able to do this through one of my favorite Google Apps, Hangouts!  Both sessions went really well, and they got me prepared for presenting at and attending the Midwest Google Summit.

     Once there, I was united with many of awesome new friends and amazing GCTs from GTA Chicago!  I never sat down to write about attending GTAChi, but I'm not sure I can really describe how life changing attending GTA really was.  Not only do I have a network of extraordinary people from that experience, but it has lead me to meet even more amazing, dedicated educators.  It has further allowed me to explore my passions and feelings about changing education in a way that I was never able to do before.  I just want to take a quick second to thank Google and CUE for that opportunity, and I hope that Changing the World is something that I will be successful in doing.

     While there were many of my cohorts from GTAChi, and several more GCTs and Trainers that I have met over the past year, I really enjoyed meeting new people, and making new connections with educators just starting to get Googly. I remember last year when I first attended MWGS for the first time and how it not only lit a fire inside me to do more and be more, but also helped me realize that I wasn't alone in my thoughts and feelings about how we need to change education for the better. It also showed me that there were many other "Geeks" in education just like me!  I hope that many other of the attendees feel the same way!

     In terms of my presentations, I really enjoyed meeting so many people who are excited about what Google can bring to schools and classrooms.  I had an absolute ball at the Moosejaw where I really got to spend time talking with people.   It was certainly better than watching the Packers/Bears game after Rodger's went down.  I can't really describe the feeling I get when talking about spreading cool ideas and new ways to integrate technology to allow for a more effective and efficient way to deliver relevant engaging instruction to our students.  It just feels amazing to talk with people like Brian and Shannon who I had a super conversation with.  They asked me many questions and may have felt like the learned something from me, but I learned just as much or more from them!

     I hope that my presentations helped to get even one person to reimagine something for their classroom or school, and that everyone was able to take away something that will make them more effective, efficient, and engaging educators!  I know that I had some great takeaways in the sessions that I attended.  I found several new tools that I'm excited to explore and use in my classes!  However, I made a decision that may truly change the course of my educational life.  I decided to attend Krisa Moroder's session, The Edtech Challenge.  This session was exactly what I needed to get super recharged and excited again, like I felt after GTA this summer.  Immediately after the session, Krista and I talked leading to me helping her with and working to help schools develop effective, effecient, and engaging schools for our students.  I can't thank her enough for letting me help out with that!

     If being inspired, getting new, awesome tools, and meeting new friends wasn't enough, I was able to spend some quality time with those friends that I have made in the past few years as well.  I was even able to watch MWGS Co-Coordinator Stacy Behmer and fellow GCT from Chicago, Tammy Lind, completely Geek out over getting Google Glass!  I participated in my first Demo Slam of that magnitude and I held my own against some very powerful Rivals.  Yeah, I'm talking about you Magiera!

I want to thank everyone involved in making MWGS happen.  If there was no MWGS, I don't know if I would be where I am today.  It was great so see everyone and meet all the new superstars of the future!  I hope to see you all again soon!

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