I had great plans to be a switched on, connected learner today at our local CEGSA09 conference. But I'm not sure where my head is at because I struggled to listen to either of the keynotes, ran most of my laptop juice out stuffing around with the wireless at the venue and skipped two sessions that I had originally planned to check out, preferring to chat to Dean, Kerry and Lauren.
I'm not even sure whether conferences really benefit me any more and I don't like being the cynical jerk at the back. But I'm starting to work out where I am in relation to many others who frequent conferences like this. Especially I know what I am not. I'm not an innovator or someone shaping future direction - I wait for the initial rush in a particular direction and try to be somewhere near the front. That's why many of the messages presented in today's keynote weren't new to me and just showcase the many contradictions that plague the meaningful use of technology in education.
Netbooks - some say that they are under powered, under sized pieces of stop gap junk and others see them as the opportunity for affordability and the chance to shake off the bloatware that many users never use fully.
IWB's - useless, putting teacher on a pedestal, digital billboards entrenching instructivist practices or essential, liberating tools that enable digital fluency for teachers and students alike when used in powerful, connecting ways.
21st century learning - meaningless buzzword or handy term to bring others on board.
Tools vs. pedagogy? Constant contradiction here.
My guru is your charlatan.
Hoping to be more switched on tomorrow.