SouthbySouthwest

Just going through my notes and I realized my presentation thoughts and outcomes did not make it to my blog. So here is my entry from March 6th and 7th. I had a good time sharing and connecting with others at this conference.

March 6th

I am on my way to the SXSW EDU conference . This is a first for me. I am excited to be leading an exception panel of educators to talk about Challenge Based Learning. The panel is represented by Sherri Brinkerhoff , Sharyn Gabriel, Kathy Craven, and me. Each one of the panel members brings area of expertise as it relates to implementing Challenge Based Learning.

I will be be sharing our adventures of participating in the 2nd CBL pilot offered by Apple. We created  a Challenge with  31 educators across the country. I will share how k12 educators implemented a CBL in their classroom as well as participated in our challenge, Creating Virtual Communities.
Sharyn and Sherri brings their area of expertise to the panel. Sharyn is a middle school principal and her teachers are implementing the CBL framework throughout her school, Ocoee Middle School. Sheri is a high school art teach who participated in my challenge but also issued a Challenge to her art students.
We are excited to share our outcomes, success stories and lessons learned. Join us on March 6 at 2 pm as we share our stories and respond to your questions.
Wednesday March 7
The conference is going well. It is a bit different than a typical educator conference. The attendees (800 or so) are more willing to participate and share their experiences than at other conferences I have attended. Some of the session topics are intriguing and more interactive.
Our session, The CBL Pilot, went amazing well. Kathy, Sharyn and I spent a few ours organizing our thoughts and preparing for possible question. We add some video and images for the keynote, and created a backchannel for questions using Todays Meet. I was not really sure what to expect. Finally we began the panel discussion.
After our brief introductions and Kathy setting the stage for what was to come, I noticed the back channel lighting up with questions and comments. The audience was already engaged! We tried to create a beginning, middle, and end as we discussed the CBL implementation. That went out the window. The questions were many but the audience was right on track with what we prepared for. They wanted to know all of the ups and downs, positives and negatives, cost, technology needs and what to do with non motivated teachers.
I now have a great appreciation for panel discussions. I really like the openness of the discussions and the willingness of the participants to ask them. It reminded me of the CBL process – let the learner drive the learning. That is what we did. We guided them through the process, in theory, created a safe environment to share their thoughts and produce a solution of willing participants. What a great hour.
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