Something crazy happened last week. I spend a crazy amount of time on twitter, maybe more than a human should. The sheer amount of ideas and information exchanged is unmatched anywhere else, and I hate to miss it. My bookmarks are overflowing. Anyways, I was just doing my thing, watching twitter. Then, this #notatiste tag showed up. Now, admittedly, I had only recently heard of ISTE, so I wasn't exactly broken up over not being there. Obviously, as someone passionate about technology integration in education, it would be great to go. However, things turned out well.
This #notatiste tag, originally meant to be some kind of pity party, I suppose, turned into a movement. It was a place where educators were coming together, sharing their ideas, and taking their conversations further than the 140 characters twitter allows. No, it wasn't the same as being able to meet up in person, but this event brought us together.
Now, I would consider myself an introvert. I can be very socially awkward and I'm not great at instigating human interaction with people I don't know. But this passionate group of educators inspired me - I wanted to have deeper conversations with them. So I did something very out of character - I decided to organize a video chat (Google Hangout) with people I've never met before in person. I was elated by the response - we had the maximum amount of participants, as well as a few others who watched the live feed.
Twitter has really changed me as a person and an educator. I know I'll be better, and I want to be better because of the networking I've done there. To communicate with so many people so frequently who are passionate about their students keeps me invigorated. It is like the camp high that won't go away! So, feel free to watch any or all of our conversation about tech integration. I'll continue to work on my moderating skills, I promise!