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tcea2014

The conference this year at TCEA 2014 was an amazing conference!

This year I wasn’t the only person from my district to attend this conference. Along the four teachers I brought with me from my campus, we had a total of 27 Royse City ISD staff members at TCEA … including our Superintendent, Kevin Worthy. Because our district/campus leadership teams see the value of instructional technology, we had a strong presence at TCEA!

Also at this conference was a fun twitter game we played called #selfieswithstuart. The point of the game was to get YOUR picture with Stuart Burt (Community ISD‘s Technology Director) and share it on Twitter with this hashtag. It started with at few of Stuart’s district teachers and grew into this huge trending topic (well at least it felt like it was a trending topic).

So Royse City ISD’s own staff member took their pictures with Stuart.

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Then it got progressively more interesting to get Stuart’s picture without his knowledge.

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Here’s a very creative way to participate with the #selfiewithstuart game and NOT actually be physically present at the conference.

2014-02-10_07-03-45But at the end, it was Stuart himself who eventually won the game with the last picture with himself and his daughters back home after the conference.

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So what did I “learn” from this experience…

Last year I wrote a blog post about TCEA and value of connecting with others on Twitter. This year I would like to continue with that same general message but with a twist. Some may see TCEA has a place where educators go and learn about the latest and greatest with instructional technology. But if you stop there, you would be selling yourself short of this rich experience.

Sharing and connecting with others at conferences and on Twitter is more than a game we play. It’s about building relationships with other people. One reason why Twitter is a great tool is because I can meet someone face-to-face at a conference AND I have the ability to continue with the relationship throughout the school year. I also have several other educators I connect with and I’ve NEVER met them face-to-face. But that doesn’t matter because I still have a strong relationship with them and we share and collaborate. I would argue that the relationships I have online are just of valid as the relationships I have face-to-face. What do you think?

Because of the relationships I have with these amazing educators, I’m better at my job and I couldn’t do it as well without them. So thank you so much my PLN…you ALL are amazing and I’m grateful for the relationship we have together.

BTW…there are SO many more other great pictures of Stuart on Twitter. Check them out with the hashtag #selfieswithstuart.