Burns supper... on the beach
I am currently 35,000 feet up with Mrs. and Ms. Edublogger*, trying to thrash through some documentation that needs reading before the inflight entertainment starts up.
Thanks to the kind invitation and generosity of the International Association of Language Learning Technology and Pine Crest School la famille is spending a long weekend on the beach at Fort Lauderdale before the conference proper begins mid-week. Rather than my traditional January 25th Burns' Supper singing silly songs with friends, I'll be brushing my brow of some midwinter heat and sunshine in Fort Lauderdale, near Miami, Florida. (Maybe, though, we'll use the Learning and Teaching Scotland Burns' resources to get us started).
Next week, I'll be keynoting and running a few workshops on the emerging pedagogies our emerging technologies can bring, showing off the fantastic resource that exists throughout the LTS Online Service, in particular the Modern Foreign Languages Environment. I'll also be using the time difference to do some teleworking of the kind that I loved ;-) in New Zealand.
Attending and presenting at this conference has already allowed me to start doing a few things:
- It's led to a peer-reviewed research paper being published in the IALLT Journal, around the theme of learning (b)logs (you can see the rough drafts from a couple of years back). It's the kind of action-based research about the impact of social media on education that so often people say doesn't exist - well it does now!
- The MFLE is undergoing some shifts in content provision, away from the technology focus of its beginnings. This helps bring what is there up-to-date as material is reviewed for a new audience.
- The current ICT in Education section is crying out for some new resources on digital storytelling, digital images and podcasting - this conference provides some classroom practice and writing time to get those pushed through.
I'd be lying if I didn't say that a week of 25 degree sunshine and evening strolls across the beach don't make all those tasks slightly easier to stomach, too. Do I regret not being able to have my haggis and eat it...? Only a wee bit.
* This is a time-delayed post. I don't do them often, but needs must...
Disclosure: IALLT have funded my flight, Pine Crest School providing accommodation. I have funded my family's flights and subsistence.