Saturday, March 22, 2014

Reflections, Part 1: Hawaii Google Summit 2014

On Friday, March 21st, and Saturday, March 22nd, I attended the annual Hawaii +Google in Education Summits by EdTechTeam. For Part 1 of my blog post on the Google Summit and before I get to my reflection and take-aways, I want to first reflect back to last year's Summit, the first ever Hawaii Google Summit.

Hawaii's first Google Summit took place in January 2013 and at that time my coworker, +Elisabeth Yuen, and I had been attempting to implement Google Apps at our school for almost a year and a half. We were early adopters in Hawaii, quick to understand the significance and importance of Google Apps for Education for teachers and students. I approached the first Hawaii Google Summit as an opportunity to learn, network, and grow in my profession, and that I did! I thought I knew a lot about Google Apps going into the Summit, but when I came out on the last day, I realized that I had no idea! I took the Google Certified Trainer Bootcamp with +Jim Sill and I also had the opportunity to meet some great people, like +Liz Castillo+Kimble McCann, +Brendan Brennan, and +Linda Lindsay. I formed connections that would later turn in to some great friendships. I also realized my calling at the first Hawaii Google Summit. I knew from that conference on that I wanted to be a presenter. I wanted to contribute to my profession, learn as much as I could from others, and in return give back in any way that I could. So, I set a goal for myself:

Present at the next Hawaii Google Summit and seek out other opportunities to share with my fellow educators.

Putting myself on the map at
'Iolani School!
Since January 2013, I think I have grown tremendously in my profession. I made the personal choice to attend my first ISTE conference, and connected with some other great educators, +Michelle Carlson Colte+Megan Cummings+Rachel Armstrong, and +Chad Nacapuy. I also became more involved in our state ISTE affiliate, HSTE and I am now the Secretary of the Executive Board with exciting plans ahead! I've also presented at a few other local conferences in 2013, including the Kamehemeha School EdTech Conference and the Schools of the Future Conference. My goal was becoming a reality!

Now, fast forward to 2014. When the call for proposals were announced for the 2nd annual Hawaii Google Summit, I jumped at the opportunity to participate and present! I convinced my administration to send a large group of 13 teachers from my school to attend the summit and was thrilled to see so many of our teachers jump at their opportunity to be a part of what I felt was going to be one of the greatest conferences of the year!

I was over joyed when I learned that I'd be presenting two sessions this year! I presented one on my own, Creating & Maintaining an Automated Online Help Desk w/ GAFE, and the other with +Elisabeth Yuen, The GAFE Dojo - Drive Workshop. I found my passion last year in presenting to my fellow educators, and I was fortunate enough to continue my goal this year.  I also found out half way through day 1 of the summit, that I was accepted as an official Google Certified Trainer, something that I had been working towards since the 2013 Summit. At the end of day 1, I gathered up some courage to participate in the Google Demo Slam, a high energy, fast paced, "shoot out" of Google tips and tricks. I went up against the big guns and failed miserably, but I thoroughly enjoyed the experience nonetheless and learned some neat tricks along the way!

I very much appreciate the +EdTechTeam's hard work and amazing conference experience! I thought last year's Google Summit was an amazing learning experience, but this year's Summit blew me away! And now I can't wait for 2015!

In Part 2 of my blog post on the Google Summit I'll share my biggest take-aways, some session details, and some of the most important things I learned from the Summit.

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