2012 ECOO Conference

Have you registered yet for the Educational Computing Organization of Ontario (ECOO) annual conference.  It’s being held October 24 – 26 at the Sheraton Parkway Hotel in Richmond Hill.  It’s not too late!  Online registration will be open until October 12, 2012 so don’t delay! 

The ECOO conference is run by educational volunteers for educators and at $100 a day, it’s the best self-directed PD you’ll find.

ECOO 2012 Highlights include:
Keynotes: John Seely Brown, Michael Fullan and Nora Young
Expert Panel discussion with the Keynotes

Special Wednesday Pre-Conference sessions including: 
Minds on Media: Bring-Your-Own-Laptop Event
OAGEE/ESRI:  Geo-spatial Technologies in the Classroom
OAME: Software for Teaching Math
OSLA: Google Apps for Education
National Film Board: Teaching Through Animation: Using NFB films and activities in your classroom

World Class Exhibit Area
Workshop Speakers from around the province and beyond
Vendor demonstrations of new software and hardware including Desire2Learn, Apple and Google
Educator twitter meetup event

Beautiful venue and reduced prices for ECOO Attendees at the Sheraton Parkway Hotel in Richmond Hill So, visit ecoo.org and REGISTER!

Hope to see you there!!!

Alison Slack
Conference Chair
Educational Computing Organization of Ontario (ECOO)


When a Blog Dies

It really is a sad thing.

I’m not talking about a blog that someone started because they took an AQ course and had to create one for that purpose or one that seemed like the thing to do and generated a post or two.  I’m talking about a blog that goes back as far as I can remember.  Alfred Thompson’s “Computer Science Teacher” dates back to 2005 and received its last post a week ago.

The blog was truly unique.  There are a few good blogs for computer science but Alfred always took a humanist approach to computer science in K-12.  It was written at a level that both new and experienced computer science teachers could read and learn something new directly applicable to the classroom.

The focus was always on Microsoft products and Alfred was never hesitant to show us how to use the free resources as well as the commercial products.  It was through Alfred’s blog that I learned about Kodu and played around with it here.

His blog was also one of those great vehicles that you can truly say introduced me to Alfred long before I met him.  Instead of those awkward moments when you first meet someone, we just launched into a continued discussion that we began online.  He was always on top of the latest and shared to the fullest.  I recall fondly bugging Alfred in his hotel room in Irvine as the poor guy was trying to chomp down a late lunch.

In addition to reading his blog and interacting on Facebook, I’ve attended a number of his sessions given at the Computer Science Teachers’ Association conference.  The most recent session was at Irvine where Alfred participated in a mobile programming smackdown.  Alfred’s Windows Phone app took on Apple and Google’s development tool.  I took his ideas back and created my own Phone application and blogged about it here.

Fortunately, while the original blog will no longer be updated, it will stay in place and Alfred will continue his rich tradition of sharing his learning and being an advocate for computer science teachers everywhere.  He will continue his efforts at his new home on Blogger.  Today’s post asks “Are You The Best Part of a Student’s Day?”  Not only a great read for computer science teacher, but change the context to any subject area and it’s still relevant.

I wish Alfred all the best in his new endeavour and wherever his learning takes him.  Thanks for all your hard efforts in the past. Onward and upward!

OTR Links 09/12/2012

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.