Have you presented at an EdTechTeam Summit? Have you challenged yourself to share your knowledge and expertise? If not, you totally should! This past EdTechTeam Summit in the High Desert was not only local for me, but also my 6th Summit (I believe :))as a presenter and probably my busiest! I challenged myself, which I seem to have a knack for and I went out of my comfort zone. After all #igotgoals!
A little background, this time I applied for three sessions and at that… three totally new sessions! To my amazement, I was accepted to present all three! Seriously, a big deal for me! Then to my surprise, myself and two of my #teamstripes PLN (@TechCoachGraham & @meagan_e_kelly) were asked and honored to represent PearDeck. Eek! This gave me four sessions… I was excited to be part of such a community and especially because I have made strong connections with many who were coming from afar. Seriously, I cannot stress one thing more than to create your “tribe,” your PLN! That sense of what you truly got into education for- to “make a difference”- will be felt through every part of your being. You truly become part of a community for the greater good and have… wait for it… FUN while doing it! The support, encouragement, and excitement is never-ending! (Notice all the exclamations??? I’m truly beyond excited, blessed, and wanting to share the goodness!)
This brings me to the weekend of the Summit. I knew I was going to be busy and I was prepared. Afterall, I had my tribe there too. You receive an email asking to participate in the Demo Slam. I thought about it. Amanda and I have done one and we won!!! So then, where do you go from there? Do it again and potentially lose your winner title- after all you’re up against amazingness- Alice Chen, Sergio Villegas, Brooke Whitlow, and John Stevens… OR go for it!?!? I decided to stick this one out only for the fact that I had three sessions to do that day. Then… the email comes asking for Ignite Sessions. These are like mini-TED talks approximately 5 minutes in length that conclude the Summits. My first thought… DO IT! Afterall, again it would push me beyond what I believe I could do, it definitely would push me out of my comfort zone and #igotgoals!
Something about being in your own hometown is scary. I know it seems like it should be easy with the support of your peers, but there is. Just. Something. I became more anxious about doing a 5 minute session than presenting in a totality of 5 sessions all weekend. I have presented in front of crowds all the time, let alone in my district, why would this be such a big deal? At the same time there was this indescribable excitement and itch to #bebetter and to relay a message that is truly from the heart.
There were four of us that day “Igniting” the passion into the crowd of educators. Of course, I was first- AHHHH! Hold it together Kelly- you got this! My session was meme-filled with a message to promote YOU to look at yourself and #bebetter! I spoke from the heart and occasionally heard the laughs and saw the smiles. I think I was shaking more afterward for the fact that I was on cloud 9!!! I mean I want to get to Keynote status, but this was somewhere to start! I took that leap and can only get better! The best part about it… the reaction! Coming from those I put on a pedestal, like Alice and Sergio, as keynoters themselves and just amazing beings. Not only did they commend me, but in fact reassured my feelings of excitement AND gave me feedback. Why am I excited about feedback? Well, my Ignite was in fact about being better. If you want to get better that’s part of the process and to be able to build upon that makes you that much BETTER! I also was reeling from the fact that if I was able to encourage just ONE person in that audience to let go of negativity, let go of attitudes, and focus on themselves- to push themselves to in fact #bebetter. Not only will they feel more accomplished and it will reflect in all aspects of their life, but I have done my job… this time! Hehe
I plan to continue to “Ignite” the passion and goals that I have. I encourage YOU to find your passion, ignite the fire, and #bebetter!