|La Jolla Coast Cliffs
|Birds Galore (Sea lions too)
|A view from the town.
After John's keynote we learned more about our week and what adventures they had in store for us. There would be four excursions over three days. Each excursion had required pre homework (some of which I did before I arrived in San Diego), and tasks along the way. Apple was modelling how an iTunes course can work in action and how mobile technology can be used in the field as a tool for learning. More about these excursions later.
In addition we would have times to interact with Apple employees who work with the products we use such as iBooks, iLife, iWork, iTunes U, iBeacons, Final Cut Pro, and iPad Accessabiilty features. This time was called Apple Lab time and the face to face time with the Apple employees allowed us to share what we liked, disliked, and would love to see from their products.
There would also be keynote speakers and master classes.
The first keynote speaker we met was E. O. Wilson. Among other things he is the author of Life On Earth , FREE interactive books. If you haven't seen them yet you must, especially if you have a passion for or are a biology teacher. They are over the heads of my grade one students but the graphics, and interactive videos can certainly help answer some of my students curiosity questions.
Dr. Wilson spoke about starting with big issues and questions that students already care about. He also talked about characteristics for success. In his words these include a restlessness of curiousity and the desire to do something big. Curious to learn more, check out his Ted Talk. You won't be disappointed.
I left his session thinking about how I inspire curiousity in my classroom, and how I can continue to bring in more "real life" learning to my students. This year I actually got rid of a typical "timetable" most Wednesdays so that we could explore our passions. My class and I had many full days exploring hands on topics that were of interest to my students. A lot of what Dr. E.O. Wilson talked about strongly resonated with me. Children need to learn about things they are curious about.
In the afternoon we had our first master class with Brad Ovenell-Carter. I am very lucky because Brad lives in my part of the world and I've been fortunate to learn with him before. However I will admit (as I did to him) that I'll take any opportunity I can to continue to learn with him. He has a brilliant mind and I love to listen to how he thinks. Brad spoke about sketch-noting. In our iTunes U course he shared this excellent sketch note primer. As he spoke I was inspired to purchase the upgrades from the Paper53 app and play a little. Keep reading, I may share one of my sketch notes.
We then met in our Geos - which means each country met with others from the same country. There were over 50 Canadian ADEs in San Diego and it was great to have time with them. Following our Geo meetings was dinner.
|A small view from above of the USA, and Mexico displays
San Dieguito River Park
|Our park rangers sharing some of the changes over time in the area.
|Some of the animals collected from the lagoon.
|The snack table filled with healthy and less healthy choices.
Torrey Pines State Natural Reserve
|A Torrey Pine - known for it's five finger like look.
|A prickly pear cactus. Did you know some have a fungus that grows on the back and emits a red dye?
|The iron what was easily drawn out of the sand with a magnet.
The second lab session I went to was around iBooks Author/ Keynote. I learned some pretty cool tricks in keynote that I can add into an iBook. In fact I was playing with Keynote and I created an interactive fortune teller. Depending on which item you clicked on you received a different answer, but eventually all responses led you back to the initial page. This little bit of knowledge had my brain spinning on what my students could create either with partners, or with an older big buddy. I learned several other things about both products that I didn't already know. It was a good way to spend the afternoon.
During dinner I was reunited with my friends who had different excursions. It was interesting to hear their perspective on their adventures and gave me something to look forward to. I enjoyed the post dinner collaborative time.
Tuesday night I was also fortunate to attend an optional session led by Bill Frakes. Talk about an incredible photographer. He is a visual story teller and his images and videos he shared were incredible. If you've got a moment take some time to check out his work. I am still pretty new to photography but I've been told I've taken some good photos. I think I see things differently than others and so it's most certainly something I want to explore more. I love to capture images and stories.
During this session I actually created my own skitch note using the Draw53 iPad app.
If you can't tell some of the highlights of Lisa's session include her belief that the environment and the economy can co exist successfully together. She shared how Apple is trying pay attention to climate change, go green, and use renewable resources. She shared how all the Apple cords are made with non toxic products, how the data centre is powered by solar energy, and so many other environment issues Apple is trying to deal with and reduce. Did you know that Apple is using 94% renewable energy to run it's company? Lisa also acknowledged they still have a long way to go. Here are a couple of her slides.
|An Apple ad run on Earth Day.
(Notice the solar panels, a renewable resource)
|We must unlock our students' potential.
|Fire damage and new growth.
|Another stunning vista.
|The landscape of the area.
|This passionate man left me thinking.
Inspired by these amazing educators! #ade2014 #adesketchnotes #MadeWithPaper pic.twitter.com/PpjVVfXG09
— Brandon Kari (@BrandonKari) July 17, 2014
After the showcases my group was left back at the hotel for more Apple labs. Once again these ones did not disappoint. After hearing great things about the iLife iWork session I started there. For 90 minutes I listened and learned. There is so much you can do with each of these pieces of software. I'll certainly need a lot more time to play and learn. It was great to have the inside scoop for certain.
My next session was on accessibility. Because of the different lengths of the Apple labs I arrived at this session late. Even in the short time I had there I learned a lot about the accessibility features available on the iPad. If you're not familiar with some of the incredible accessibility features on an iPad we should talk. Several of the ADE showcases focusses on how the accessibility features of the iPad have transformed learning for students with special needs. If I can't help you I certainly can put you in touch with someone that can.
|Lunch with a really great crew of fellow ADEs.
|Kristen and I exploring our classroom!
|Cloth (denim I think)
|The view from the plankton classroom/lab.
|In scientist mode trying to identify plankton.
|Kristen confirming my observations.
|Jay and I
|A great keepsake image of me just about to begin.
|Friday's showcase presenters
More inspiration! #ade2014 #adesketchnotes pic.twitter.com/2qtYNBISoP
— Brandon Kari (@BrandonKari) July 18, 2014
|Inspiring CANADIAN Apple Employees Vivian and Audrey
|Me with the inspiring Caroline and Kristin from Chicago
|Robyn and I
|Some of the incredible Canadian crew with Maxx Judd
|The final photo with my very good friend Kristen. It's too bad she lives on the other side of the country.
If you have the opportunity to apply to become an Apple Distinguished Educator I encourage you to. The processes isn't easy and I am still incredible thankful that I was successful with my application. I know many educators who should be part of this family with me and I hope you will consider applying (or re applying). There is no family quite like this one. As much as our connection to the love of Apple products is what has brought us together, it goes way, way beyond that. I can't stress that enough.
Until next time my friends....