The annual ISTE conference is always an exciting time to connect with educators from around the world. We love meeting with everyone who comes by the Hapara booth. ISTE 2018 was no different! We got to chat with hundreds of educators in the Expo Hall, and learn more about how they are currently teaching and learning with technology.
This year, we also sent our good friend Julian Daher out with a camera to learn more about the latest ideas and tech tools that were trending in the ISTE Expo Hall. This was Julian’s first ISTE, and he was very excited to connect with other ISTE-goers.
Check out the video below to find out what Julian learned at ISTE 2018!
The biggest trends from ISTE 2018
Hi, everybody. My name is Julian Daher. I’m here in Chicago, in beautiful Illinois at the International Society for Technology Education Conference, otherwise known as ISTE.
I’m actually here joining an amazing group of leaders and thinkers behind Hāpara and how they really promote student agency and visibility for all students.
I’m on a little bit of a journey today. As a teacher here, as a guest, I’m walking around.
This is my first time at the conference. I’m going to be going around asking people their favorite things, what they’ve been doing, what they’re learning, and any deliverables that they want to share.
So what have you learned so far at ISTE?
I mean, it’s incredible that there is a thousand things going on.
It is. This is my first time. What about you guys?
This is our first time. Our first day.
And your first day.
OK, so, wow!
We’re trying to bring digital tools into the classrooms to build more conferences in the future, and show them that you can do more than just the program in front of you.
OK. You have a meaningful program. That’s really great.
And directly related to that. We have a lot of devices that have been purchased for schools.
But there’s not a lot of guidance on how–
How to actually–
How could we use this– –in a meaningful way?
So I was originally a secondary teacher doing social sciences, mostly with history and that sort of thing.
But when I discovered how I could really reach out to students digitally and getting different voice and choice and having all those opportunities for students to talk about, what they really wanted to tell me, but not have to write an essay, and not have to– but they could do slides, and they could– and it was really– I started getting a lot.
We started having a lot more fun when I could push out a slide to every kid.
They could have their own deck, and then they could be able to talk about what they were doing.
And they didn’t have– nothing got lost anymore because they knew exactly where to put it.
And so all of a sudden, those kids, their stuff wouldn’t have been organized before– all of a sudden became organized.
So now I’m hearing from these students who would’ve struggled to participate in just a paper class.
Then all of a sudden they have these digital tools. BrainPOP covers not only social studies, but science, technology, and English, math.
We have all the different subjects areas listed here.
And we have had over a thousand topics between BrainPOP and BrainPOP Jr. BrainPOP is year third through eighth grade.
We have both content and tools that are going to help explain difficult concepts–
This is probably for our oldest students. [INAUDIBLE] teachers to get to know the type of content BrainPOP covers.
So I can click into a subject area.
And then click into the topic area, like space here.
And then every single one of these is a topic with animated movies and interactive quizzes and features, simulations, all kinds of really great stuff.
So you both have a digital classroom, right?
Are you one-to-one with technology right now?
With no books?
All of the district, one-to-one?
Well, I’m K-6.
I mean, [INAUDIBLE] to do it.
I’m always amazed because–
I mean, I work for a fantastic school.
And we’re not one-to-one. We have [INAUDIBLE] as well, but we have about 12 to 14.
We try to even it out, make it more fluid, where we’re at, try to make it as good as possible.
But I hear about the one-to-one, and I’d love to pick their brains because I’m [INAUDIBLE] I’ve done in my teaching with space rotations, small learning communities, and using [INAUDIBLE] materials for a station.
And now they’re cooperating.
And then I think of the other flip part where you’re one-to-one and they each have their own devices.
So what’s your take on it?
How do you feel?
How has it been?
What’s it been like?
You have the flexibility, if you’re grading something and then it’s your own device, then you’ll help them there.
You can also do the collaboration and just have partners working together.
We decided that we wanted to build something that teaches coding, but we wanted to do it a little differently.
So Bitsbox is actually a subscription service for kids and higher.
So parents, teachers, whatever, can subscribe, and then we send the materials that we offer– projects.
And then kids go onto our website and they code the project on the website.
And that’s how it works.
We’re proud media partners of ISTE 2018, and we have been for the last several years.
So we promote the conference through our digital e-magazine, shared learning report on Canada’s Learning and Technology e-mag.
And that’s available at no cost to educators around the world.
So we have probably some 20-plus countries that read us regularly.
Every week– we’ve gone from a monthly to a weekly because there’s so much happening when it comes to technology of use in pedagogy.
And we have a conference–
I love it.
It’s going to be an epic leadership summit.
Our theme this year is reimagining the state of a learning environment.
We’re also interested in the conversation– do you think that it is necessary to have one-to-one, or it is almost better to have those smaller learning communities with two people working in groups?
We have enough for a classroom to use that every kid could be on.
But it might be where there are– several classes might have to share the devices.
So you could have a situation for a lesson where they are one-to-one, or sometimes it could be where some of them share around, you know, say, she’ll have six.
So right now, that’s kind of where a lot of schools are at.
And the schools that aren’t one-to-one, a lot of them are using online testing at this point.
So in an elementary setting, where we are focused, we like the collaboration that happens on smaller– just learning through devices, teacher-led activities and small construction, or kids having [INAUDIBLE]..
So are you a digital classroom?
I like it.
I love it.
You love it?
We’re working right now on how we can– we have instructions [INAUDIBLE]..
So how we can use that as a support.
Making them options.
I am showing Hapara over here in the IT and cloud booth with Google.
So we have a lot of school administrators who were stopping by, just kind of trying to find out if this platform would fit with their teachers–
That’s awesome. –to see how it would work.
Wow, so I know that standing here, you’re meeting a lot of administrators.
I just wonder– what is the biggest question that they have?
Really, they’re looking at how to increase adoption of the– so they spend a lot of money on Chromebooks, maybe some money on beefing up their infrastructure in their schools, and definitely on professional development with their teachers.
So now it’s kind of putting it all together and figuring out how to get more teachers to use it.
I almost look at it in two phases.
Like, there’s one probably having the administrators coming and learning about Chromebooks, maybe doing one-to-one, or buying a bunch for a school district.
And then phase two would be those already-adopters wanting to see how they could leverage a tool or a solution like Hapara to overlay itself on more students.
So have you seen both of those categories?
I’ve seen them.
I’ve seen both.
And I’ve just talked to an administrator from the great state of Hawaii.
And they had been using Chromebooks for four years.
And so they are really searching for just a little bit more on how to manage the Google and drive the staff.
Well, the momentum’s there.
I just wanted to tell you you guys are really friendly.
And I wanted to say hi.
Well, you’re Canadian.
You’re very friendly.
Oh, thank you!