At the end of last year Apple called for applications for the Apple Distinguished Educator programme. The application consisted of a series of essays and a 2 minute video. Despite being heinously busy trying to finish reports, I figured I’d give it a go thinking that the application process itself would be an awesome reflective tool to document my first year in teaching.
Never in a million years did I think that I my application would be successful and that I would get to hang with a couple of hundred awesome educators from around the Asia Pacific region.
But here I am in paradise with an important lesson already learned, never say no to opportunities. You might think there are other, more awesome and better qualified people that will get the nod. But really there’s no harm in putting your hand up, the worst that will happen is that someone might say no. And sometimes, you might get a yes.
And that yes can be life changing.
Already I’ve met so many fabulous educators, so many people to connect with and learn from. I’ve got ideas from improv artist, photographers, doctors, techno geeks and awesome teachers that will make a difference in my class. Which is part of the reason I’m here. While I love geeking out and playing with gadgets I’m here to learn to be a better teacher.
Coming into the Apple institute, I worried that the technology might actually detract from that mission. After all Apple users can be a tad obnoxious about their love of iDevices at times. Several hundred in one room could run the risk of the event being a full on Mac love-in. However far from being a full on meeting of of the cult of mac, the conference thus far hasn’t been about having the latest shiny device or a 1:1 programme. It’s been about making connections, taking risks and asking big questions.Proving my maximum that’s it’s not about having the latest technology that makes a difference, it’s what you do with the technology that counts.
In the words of Bill Frakes, who gave an amazing presentation on creating engaging digital assets, the device doesn’t take the photo. It’s the heart, eye, mind, and soul the black box is just a capture device.
I’m looking forward to learning more in the coming days.