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Consider ISTE & our SIG! A repost of Doug’s ISTE SIGMS alert

I am thrilled that our fair city, Philadelphia, is hosting the 2011 ISTE Conference.  I am doubly thrilled that TLs will be a fierce presence here.  Please consider attending this outstanding learning event from June 26th through 29th.

While I am already overplanning events and sessions of all flavors, I wanted to highlight some events of particular interest to our tribe.

Edubloggercon on Saturday, June 25th, precedes the big event with a full day of exciting conversations.  It will continue throughout the actual conference with ISTE Unplugged, hosted near the Bloggers’ Cafe.  In this venue, anyone can present at ISTE from June 26 – 29, all day each day!  And local presentations will be streamed out.

I absolutely agree with Doug (Blue Skunk) Johnson’s assessment about the following exciting SIGMS Forum event:

Without a doubt, the program that all librarians and administrators will want to search for first is the SIGMS Forum: There is No Better Time: A Dawning Era for School Librarian. Lisa Perez and I have been working to create THE most exciting event at ISTE this year. Here is the plan:

This will be a series of six TED-like talks.  Each of talk will be 10-15 minutes in length with a short introduction and a 2 minute response from a pre-selected attendee. There will be some back channel, tweeting and other annoying stuff you all are so fond of as well.

Each talk centers on the theme of a “dawning era for school librarians and new definitions of our profession” with each speaker offering a unique focus.


Amy Oberts: Venti Views from a Tech & Book Barista: A learning community depends on a daily fix from a library aBUZZ with activity

Anita Beaman: The E-volution of Books: Ebooks, E-readers and the Future of Reading or, Where Are We Going and Do I Have to Get in That Handbasket

Buffy Hamilton: Participatory Librarianship, Learning, and Literacy: Creating Conversations for Contributing, Connecting, and Collaborating

Cathy Jo Nelson: The Blind Leading the Blind: Be the trailblazer for newbies, veterans and students alike modeling the use of new tools for professional development and student learning.

Gwyneth Jones: Viva La Revolución! Make a daring digital shift for your practice & the community.
Having a web presence, keeping hip with cultural literacy, transliteracy, & building strong personal learning networks is not just an extra burden, but a necessity for the modern teacher librarian. It’s never too late to start…and it’s easier than you might think! Advocate for our profession by embracing change & the digital shift: Don’t Hate -Appreciate! Viva la Revolucion!

Shannon Miller: Be the change you want to see: empowering students with a VOICE in education

These are real librarians who are practicing what they preach. They are the new voices of school librarianship-helping us create a more powerful, more integral place in the lives of our students and our schools. And they are each wonderful, engaging presenters. This is a ticketed event. You snooze, you lose if you don’t get registered. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

I am working with colleagues on another pretty exciting panel.  Our Learning Tools Family Feud: Crowdsourced Edition, is scheduled for Monday, June 27th at 12:45.  Panelists include our host Steve Dembo, joined by Gwyneth Jones, Chad Lehman, Shannon Miller, Nicholas (nerdyteacher) Provenzano and Matthew Winner.  Here’s the description:

A favorite 70s game show with a fabulous 21st century twist. Listen in while our lively panel illustrates the results of a learning tools survey. Teacher-librarian practitioners (and other EdTech change agents) will share results of an international crowd-sourced survey relating to 21st century learning tools and face-off on the most practical application of those tools in the library and classroom. Participants will actively engage in sharing in their own survey and will develop better understandings of effective practice in integrating new tools into engaging instruction.

The SIGMS Breakfast and Annual Meeting is Wednesday at 8:00 AM.  This year’s theme is Swimming in the Flow. Lisa Perez and Will Richardson will explore Succeeding in the New Information Landscape.  How do we become literate at seeking, evaluating, synthesizing and sharing relevant information to meet our learning goals?  Tickets are required and seating is limited for this one too.

Gail Petri, and Stephen Wesson of the Library Of Congress offer Library of Congress Primary Sources: Sparking Critical Thinking, a session on building students’ critical-thinking skills using free, easy-to-find primary sources and teacher tools on Tuesday, June 28th at 1:00pm.

Karen Kliegman presents Make It Work! How to Make Your School Library Indispensable on Wednesday, June 29th at 1:15.

I missed this one initially in my search, but it is now on my must-attend list:  “Personal Learning Environments for the Digital Age.” Laura Deisley, Wendy Drexler, and Buffy Hamilton share three case studies that explore student construction of personal learning environments that uniquely support authentic networked learning. Learn more at

As for poster sessions, I am particularly looking forward to these on Tuesday at 10 AM:

Hope to welcome you all to Philly in June!

Joyce Valenza About Joyce Valenza

Joyce is an Assistant Professor of Teaching at Rutgers University School of Information and Communication, a technology writer, speaker, blogger and learner. Follow her on Twitter: @joycevalenza


  1. Thanks for a few more suggestions for my Planner, Joyce! Looking forward to Tribal connections, as always 🙂

  2. I’d also like to invite you to our session, “Personal Learning Environments for the Digital Age.” Laura Deisley, Wendy Drexler, and I will share three case studies that explore student construction of personal learning environments that uniquely support authentic networked learning. Learn more at


  3. How did I miss that, Buffy???? It’s now in the post. Can’t wait to see you in Philly, my friend!

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