Laptop Institute: Focusing on What’s Next

Starting to awake from my summer slumber and getting back into things. I find myself once again somewhere over Montana on my way to Alan November’s BLC Conference in Boston. This will be my 3rd year presenting at BLC and its timing always marks the end of my summer vacation.

A couple weeks ago though I spend four days in Memphis at the laptop Institute conference put on by Lausanne Collegiate School. A fantastic conference with a clear mission.

studentipad
by Flickr ID: flickingerbrad

What I liked most about the Laptop Institute is the question about students having a computer, having a connection is a non-issue. Everyone at this conference believes that every students should have a computer. It was great to talk to schools who where already 1:1 and to schools who were in the process of getting there. Everyone though….on the same page, making it fun to talk about pedagogy, tools, and ideas.

My keynote and sessions were all video taped. I’ve embedded the keynote below and you can watch the other sessions if you would like at this link.

I was also excited to see schools bringing teams of teachers to the conference. Very few people were there alone and some smaller private schools brought their whole staff. A great PD/staff bonding trip.

There were a few international schools at the conference as well. American School of Bombay who also puts on their own Laptop Institute called ASB Unplugged every other year, brought their new hires to the conference and even ran an all day pre-conference for their new hires to get them up to speed on what to expect and what is expected of them at their new school. What a fantastic idea!

As someone who has to try and train teachers on the technologies at a new school while at the same time new teachers are trying to settle into a new country, find their classroom, and everything else that comes with a new job, I like ASB’s approach as it also shows the new hires that technology is taken seriously at the school from day one.

I would recommend the Laptop Institute to any school who is already 1:1 or is preparing to go there. It’s a great place to network with others who have been through the roll-out process, who are using different tools, and what works and what doesn’t. The best part is you soon find out there are all sorts of ways to go 1:1 and not one right way to do it. Know your community, know your school and going 1:1 can be a great experience!

2 Comments

  1. Jeff, Thanks for the excellent learning experiences at this year’s Laptop Institute. I also highly recommend the institute. Our school, Graded, sent a team of 17 to the conference and it was well worth our time and resources. The group has come back excited and is already sharing ideas with colleagues. It also helped them to see that other educators are at different stages of their learning and that the interactions with colleagues from around the world is so beneficial. We plan to send others in the future.

  2. Great blog. I cant wait to spread the word.

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