Birds of a Feather Session Information photo

Birds of a Feather Session Information

The submission process for proposing a Birds of a Feather session at ISTE 2014 is now closed. Thank you to all who entered a proposal.  All accepted Birds of a Feather session will be announced by April 1, 2014

This group will continue to serve as a planning tool for Birds of a Feather sessions. 

Information on Birds sessions at ISTE 2014

Birds of a Feather sessions are opportunities to engage in discussions about topics of interest. (They are not presentations.) Birds will be scheduled at the following days and times:

Sunday, June 29 from 5:30 to 6:45 pm

Monday, June 30 from 5:00 to 6:15 pm

ISTE Special Interest Groups will also be meeting during the conference sessions and the Birds timeslots.

Purpose of the Birds Group

The purpose of the Birds group is to:

• identify prospective organizers/moderators, topics, or groups with similar interest to requesting meeting space

• identify collaborations between people with similar topics in mind

• gauge audience interest in the topics

• plan and develop the content (outline scope of the topic, guiding questions, useful resources, etc.)

• host results and ongoing information on the topics for a time following the conference.

Meeting space will constrain the number of Birds sessions that can be accepted. The ISTE 2014 Program Committee will make the final decisions and schedule the Birds sessions into time slots and locations.


April 1: Announce list of accepted topics and moderators

April 1- April 5Speaker session submission in the database

March 24—ISTE 2014: Ongoing: Planning of Birds

June 29–30: Birds take place and may post results/discussions/documents to this group or start their own group on the ISTE 2014 ning.

39 Members

You need to be a member of ISTE 2014 Network to add comments!


  • Topic = Empowering student and educator voice through the Speak Up surveys

    Brief Description = Time to Speak Up! Come have an impact on the future of education by giving your input on the Speak Up 2014 questions. Let’s talk about how digital technology plays a role in your current position and what new and existing edtech trends and topics we should be focusing on in this year’s surveys.

    Additional Information = This birds session will be moderated by Jenny Hostert, Speak Up Operations Manager, and Julie Evans, CEO of Project Tomorrow. Project Tomorrow is the national education nonprofit organization that facilitates the annual Speak Up National Research Project to collect and report on the authentic, unfiltered ideas of K-12 students, educators and parents on digital learning. For the past 11 years, we have consistently worked with a wide and varied collection of educational thought leaders from policy education agency professionals to practicing teachers and administrators to parents and even students to target topics that are of the most interest to school and district leadership right now to ensure that the Speak Up data that is given back to the schools and districts is of maximum value. We are eager to hear about what you’ve been experiencing with digital learning in your current position and would love to have you share your ideas on the new topics we should be focusing on in this year’s Speak Up 2014 survey. RSVP to Jenny at and we will save a seat for you!

    Jenny Hostert, Project Tomorrow
  • Topic: Digital Badge Learning for Professional Development
    Purpose: Explore possibilities of digital badge learning for teacher professional development
    Brief Description: Participants will crowdsource purposes and possiblities of digital badges for teacher professional development. Attendees would have an opportunity to find others who are interested in collaborating in designing these kinds of learning opportunities for educators, as well a chance to think about best practices around badge learning in professional development. Some possible topics include: leveling up digital media literacies; competency-based learning; educators identifying areas they want to explore and gain skills and achievements; game layer and element of play in PD learning; current trends in field; connecting professional learning to practice and more
    Name: Sarah Blattner, Badge Lead and Executive Director, TAMRITZ
    Twitter: @tamritzlearning

    **I am happy to lead and facilitate this conversation, as I am already tinkering with this topic and have a keen interest in growing my own thinking through the wisdom of my colleagues.
  • Idea Topic: Wearable Technology in the Learning Environment

    Brief Description: Participants would discuss how Google Glass can be used as a teaching/learning tool in the school environment. Participants would discuss how this tool could be used to differentiate process and content in the classroom. Participants would discuss how App-Smashing would be used with this device. Participants would discuss how 21st century skills can be reinforced with the use of this device in the classroom.

    Courtney Pepe, Monroe Township High School,, Twitter @ipadqueen2012
  • Idea Topic or Meeting Purpose: Researchers in Education

    Brief Description: We are among you. The teacher crunching t-tests during a planning period. The administrator conducting endless surveys and interventions. The academic attempting to get enough data for her ethnography. We often feel isolated in our double-lives as practitioners and scholars, but we are not alone! Let's finally get together, share stories (and maybe some data), find like-minded researchers, no matter how esoteric your topic may be, and feel a little more connected. This networking session will begin with breakout groups on topics and in specializations and then continue into a discussion forum on an open variety of topics including the challenges of conducting educational research and encouraging others to come join the "fun!"

    Name and Affiliation: Cat Flippen, Teacher at Mount Vernon Presbyterian School in Atlanta and Doctoral student in the Educational Technology program at the University of Florida.
    Twitter: @CatFlippen (
  • Idea topic: Project-Based Learning (PBL) Birds of a Feather
    Description: PBL advocates and newbies have an opportunity to connect face-to-face and plant seeds for future collaboration.This has been a popular event at past ISTE conferences.
    Name: Suzie Boss, Edutopia blogger on PBL and member of Buck Institute for Education National Faculty. Also an ISTE author (Reinventing PBL).
    (Note: Jane Krauss may be available to co-facilitate.)
    • Thanks Suzie -- Everyone can expect "Angry Birds" chocolate to ward off late-day fatigue.
  • Idea Topic: Tech + Apps for Spanish Speakers and Learners: TIC para Hispanohablantes

    Brief Description: Share effective technology resources for K12 students who speak or are learning Spanish. We'll talk about resources, sites, software, projects, and activities in Spanish.

    Other info: (Session will be in English and Spanish.) Each attendee can have five minutes at the podium to share something they use or recommend. All contributions will be captured for sharing to the group later and on the ISTE Ning. Before the session, some information will be posted to the Ning to start the sharing and to solicit questions or issues for the session. We will invite some individuals from Eduteka and other groups to share their free resources to maximize the value for all who attend this BoF.

    Name and Affiliation: Dr. Rita Oates, Oates Associates (has led this session several years at ISTE),; Dr. Leonid Rabinovich, Broward Co. (FL) Schools; Dwight Hutson, Atlanta Public Schools
    Leonid and Dwight came to this BoF at prior ISTEs and had great contributions, so I have asked them to team with me in leading this session.
  • Idea Topic: Connecting ISTE Members from the Pacific Rim

    Brief Description: Affiliates around the Pacific Ocean have unique stories to share and unique challenges. In this Birds of a Feather session, we will bring together the affiliates from the Pacific Rim area to connect, communicate, and collaborate.

    Name and Affiliation
    Mike Travis - President, HSTE (Hawaii Affiliate) -

    If you are in an affiliate in the Pacific Rim area, please contact me to be a part of the group and let's plan the time together!

    Looking at the Sunday evening time as the best time for the event.
  • Idea Topic: Using digital content in the classroom

    Brief Description: There are many options and many definitions of digital content, from access codes to etextbooks to open educational resources. I would like to get people together to discuss what has worked well for them, what features they find useful, how they have incorporated these into their classrooms, and how they have found/created/distributed the materials.

    Name and Affiliation:
    Carrie Watkins, Digital Consultant at MBS Digital Solutions Group (Carrie works with our partner schools transitioning to digital content -- in our platform and many others)
    Becky Hoover, Digital Consultant at MBS Digital Solutions Group (Becky works to get content for our partner schools, including publisher content, publisher resources and open content)
  • Idea: Birds of a Feather: Connecting K-12 with higher education. Come join those who work in k-12 schools with those who teach pre-service teachers. In many states/countries/areas there is not much communication between higher education and the technology needs of k-12 schools. Let's break the ice and discuss what schools want to see from higher ed, and have higher educators hear what is wanted in from their future graduates.
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