Finding old friends at NECC

One of the best things about going to conferences like NECC is meeting up with old friends and finding out they are still doing the same awesome things that made them friends in the first place.

NECC photo - Harper, Parker, Gragert

Here are a couple of really old friends… Dennis is going to kill me for that, especially since he is looking all svelte these days…

Pictured here are (from left) Dennis Harper, founder of Generation YES, Scott Parker, teacher and tech coordinator from Hill City, Kansas, and Ed Gragert, executive director of the International Education and Resource Network (iEARN.)

Scott uses both GenYES and iEARN in his schools. His GenYES students teach students and teachers how to access iEARN global projects and use them in every classroom and in every subject. I’ve written about Scott before – Longfellow Middle School wins Kansas in the World Award for Excellence in International Education is just one example.

Ed Gragert and Dennis Harper were both named to the 2008 Edutopia’s Daring Dozen list, which has their images staring at each other across the page as if they were plotting to change the world! How did the Edutopia art director know that’s EXACTLY what happens when you get the two of them together?

iEARN was also prominently featured in the NECC Tuesday morning keynote by Jim Carleton And Mali Bickley. We heard that people really enjoyed seeing the variety of student projects that they showcased. Real work by real students and real teachers – what a concept! (You can get the webcast of the keynote here. Note: I have not tried to watch it myself, and I did hear that the site is very slow. Maybe the traffic has eased somewhat.)

Another treat – a podcast interview with Ed Gragert from The Teachers’ Podcast — The New Generation of Ed Tech PD blog. If you’ve never heard of iEARN, take a listen to this. In 20 years, over 20,000 schools and organizations, over 1 million students in 115 countries have participated in iEARN global collaboration projects. Students connecting, collaborating, and changing the world, one person at a time.

Here’s to good friends, old and new!

Sylvia

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