Friday, November 16, 2012

Lessons from NCTE 2012

Day two of the conference is just about over. Sitting in my last session today I thought of many things:

·      How grateful I am to my district for letting me come.
·      How blessed I am to have a husband who willingly pays what they don’t.
·      How much I learn and soak in during these brief days.
·      What an amazing group of teachers I know.

And here’s the thing. I faced a lot of fears to get here. I abhor flying. Anxiety that is almost paralyzing occurs when I’m on a plane. I do think it has something to do with my control issues. Placing all of my trust in others is scary. That being said, I did it.

Today was my first presentation. I’ve presented in my own district before but this was different. Shortly before our session we realized our room would be outside of the main building and quite a trek. As I walked over I began to wonder if anyone would walk that far to hear us. And then the doors opened. People began trickling in. I quickly busied myself with helping Kellee set up the technology, then I didn’t have to look up. J When I finally did, I saw this:

Oh my goodness. My heart was pounding. But you know what? I think it went well. I was super nervous when it was my time to talk but quickly saw familiar faces, friends I’ve met through Twitter. They nodded, smiled at me, encouraged me on. Thank you all – you have no idea how much that meant.

And, as always with these types of conferences, there are not enough minutes in the day. I ran from meetings, to sessions, to presentations, to the exhibit hall and more meetings, to more sessions. And no matter how much I hurried, I couldn’t see it all, and that’s ok.

What I’ve come away with on day two is how amazing teaching is. Sir Ken Robinson started us off this morning with inspiring words. And teacher and authors kept me thinking all day long. Finishing up this day with writing advice from Jeff Anderson and Mark Overmeyer was fuel to the fire. I started this blog almost a year ago after NCTE 2011 made me want to write. This conference has continued to add to that passion. Can’t wait to see what tomorrow has in store.