It's Debatable

I spent some time this afternoon with some friends from the area that had also gone to ISTE this year. We got together with the intent of sharing what we had learned while in Atlanta and reflecting on our time there. One thing that that we all said was that there really wasn't anything new and flashy for us. +Nicole Zumpano said that she was looking for some reinforcement for some ideas like Genius Hour that she had been toying with. +Charlene Chausis found that she didn't really spend a whole lot of time in sessions but spent more time volunteering at the conference. For me, like I blogged about earlier, it was all about creating and building on connections with other educators because I can learn from them throughout the year, not just the week of ISTE.

As we were discussing the different sessions that we did attend I was reminded of a conversation that I had with +Steve Dembo at the airport waiting for our flight which was delayed, just enough for us to be able to watch the U.S. lose their World Cup game. Anyway, while we were sitting there Steve was telling me about the different sessions that he had presented during the conference. He mentioned one where his presentation was in a shared space with another presentation on the same topic. I'm not really sure of the specifics, but I know that it got me thinking about different formats for conference sessions. And I have an idea (scary, I know) ... I would love to see a debate session. The conference, ISTE or ICE, could choose hot topics in education or technology, people could then submit different viewpoint proposals to "present", a few would be chosen and those people could debate that topic during a session and participants could vote using something like Google Moderator or GoSoapBox. (That was a very long sentence.) I learn through healthy discourse and I think that this would make a very engaging session format, that I know I would love to attend. 

I'm not really sure who at ISTE to share this idea with, so I just decided to write about it here. Who knows, maybe someone will get wind of it. The funny thing is that when I was sharing this idea today +Michelle Russell said that her and +Tracy Crowley had a similar idea. Great minds think alike!


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