Friday, June 27, 2008

Friday Evening at NECC2008

In town, when I finally got it together to start contacting folks, I found Peggy Sheehy and Keisha Ray, two colleagues and friends I thought should know one another. I met Keisha shopping with her friends Kelly and Molly and Keish and I broke off to go to Dick's Last Resort for a tasty beverage and a chat. The bartender there told me that he wanted to start teaching guitar in Second Life. I think that's a great idea!

Peggy joined us, and what's more, she brought Bernajean Porter, she of the digital storytelling fame and celebrity. Note, if you will, her inclusion in the Wikipedia entry on the topic...

I'm a bad podcaster, I guess. But though I did think about asking permission to record the conversations, I did not. You simply have to take my word when I say that putting those folks together was the best thing I've done in a while. Keisha, Metro Nashville Public Schools' Assistant Superintendent for Grants and Programs, wasn't aware of Peggy's pioneering work in Second Life, or really about Bernajean's firebrand approach to the power of digital storytelling and her embrace of that virtual world platform as one more way to help students gain skills to share with the world the stories they have to tell. She is now, by gosh, and I am moreso by virtue of being a witness to the animated discussion at the table.

Bernajean's about to unleash a project encouraging teachers to share stories of how they've made a difference in their students' lives. You'll be hearing a lot more about this, so keep an ear out. It was such a joy to meet her that I'm feeling blessed tonight.

And blessed also to finally meet in real life my good friend Cathy Walker, Arkansas technology teacher and a long time collaborator in Second Life. Cathy (padlurowncanoe Dibou in SL) is orchestrating the inworld audio stream we'll use to deliver audio from our SLedupotential workshop here Monday to attendees in Second Life. She's also a stunningly smart woman and a kind person and it was amazing to meet her. I'm looking forward to working with her more this week and in the future. the chemistry between Cathy and Keisha extended my own appreciation of the night, and it was further enhanced by the joining of others, including John Miller, Marianne Malstrom, and several other fun folks. We all headed over to Mad Dogs Pub for dinner and more chat. A great start to an exciting week of conversation and learning! The real work starts tomorrow, as I spend from 8 to 5 in edubloggercon! This work, tonight, falls in the category of networking and learning. Well done, I say.

2 comments:

Kent said...

Scott,

Thank you for creating the virtualNECCers area in Ning. I would have given [almost] anything to hang out with B.Porter last night...

Kent
Ontario, Canada

Mrs. Pritchard said...

Hello Scott,

You don't know me but I was just reading and writing about you on my blog at http://www.pritchardspress.blogspot.com

I understand that you are presenting information on Second Life. I would love to learn more about this.

I was wondering if you podcast and engage your elementary students in second life activities?? If so, How do you get the permission from the district?
Have a great NECC conference!