ISTE 2017 Reflections: Learning Spaces, Useful Resources and More
Another ISTE whirlwind is now on the books! ISTE 2017 in San Antonio was my fourth ISTE and it was one of the best ones yet. I think I’ve finally learned how to pace myself, be selective about what I want to do and see and really soak it in. This year my main foci were connecting with others, promoting my books and learning even more about learning space design. Make sure you make it all the way through this post, because there’s goodies for you at the bottom 🙂 Here are my reflections:
Awesome ISTE Sessions
One thing I’ve learned about presenting at ISTE is that I have to be really selective about how many sessions I go to. This year, I only went to four sessions beyond those that I was presenting at. I decided to focus primarily on learning spaces and libraries, in part because I just finished my book. Also, I want to keep sourcing ideas for how I’ll be changing up the space and programming at my new school.
I sketchnoted all the sessions I went to, so scroll down to see my notes on each of the sessions.
Here’s a crowd-sourced Padlet created during the session with more ideas.
Check out their book The Space – it’s a great resource.
I think that ISTE recorded this one so keep an eye out for it.
Four years ago, I found my tribe at ISTE in Atlanta. I love coming back every year and connecting with people there. Some of the highlights this year: geeking out over Colleen and Aaron Graves upcoming MaKey MaKey book, hanging with the ISTE Librarians Network leadership team at the networking fair and breakfast, getting to see old friends and make new ones. One of the best parts was when people would come up to me and share pictures of their LEGO wall, or tell me how my blog helped them to start their makerspace or change up their library. These interactions really do mean the world to me. Some days it feels like I’m just throwing stuff out into cyberspace and hoping it helps someone – it’s always so nice to find out when it does.
I didn’t have a lot of vendor hall time this year, so I concentrated specifically on furniture vendors since I’m planning a renovation of my library space in two years. This year I connected with Steelcase, VS Furniture (by the way, Hokki is in fact, pronounced like hockey), Copernicus, and Custom Education Furnishings (CEF).
I was especially excited to visit CEF’s booth because I partnered with them at Stewart during my last few months there. If you follow my Instagram, you may know about the furniture challenge that my Stewart Makers club worked on in the spring. The end result of that challenge was the Stewart Storage Cart, now being manufactured by CEF. Not only did I get to see the cart that my students designed on the showroom floor, but I also got to see the amazing video CEF created about my students and their creation. I’ll be writing up more on this soon, but for now, check out the video:
I was super excited this year to present my first solo concurrent session at ISTE. I’ve done posters, panels and playgrounds, but this was my first time where it was just me. The turnout was fantastic – standing room only even though it was the last day of the conference. The energy in the room was great, and it was wonderful to get to share with so many educators.
The Knights of Make-a-Lot (third year in a row) was tons of fun. The Future Ready Librarians panel was fast paced and full of amazing ideas. I met tons of awesome people at my playground sessions. Whether you made it to my sessions or missed me, check out my ISTE 2017 presentation resources page for slides, related resources and more.
Goodies for you!
If you scrolled this far, congrats! Colleen Graves and I had flyers during the conference for a 20% discount on our book, Challenge-Based Learning in the School Library Makerspace. Our publisher has been generous enough to offer this out through July 31, so if you missed us or were #notatiste, you can still get the discount! Click this link to get the discount – it’s only available through July 31!
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