Recently, I had the AMAZING opportunity of doing some graphic recording for the ISTE No Fear Coding Lab. This was such an amazing experience to not only connect with educators who understand the value of coding across the curriculum and are willing to develop themselves professionally to make sure that their students are learning important computational thinking skills. I had the awesome experience of working with Penny Krebiehl and Matt Orley for this conference to capture the keynote speakers and the themes of the breakout sessions. We worked together during the keynote sessions to create live graphic recordings of the content, and then broke up the themes that were covered throughout the remainder of the conference to produce graphic recordings that summed up those themes.
I love that some people were able to capture us in the design phase. As this was the first time for me doing this in a different way other than sitting in a chair or on the floor at a conference while someone was speaking, communication was key for us! For many of the keynote presentations, I often created sticky notes with thoughts and ideas and passed them on to Penny and Matt who started designing (with me being an educator it helped to filter the information and they could concentrate on the imagery and lettering). Then at the end I jumped in on the boards to help finish off recording any sticky notes and design.
For the themed breakout sessions, I attended sessions about Maker Education, Robotics, and Computer Science Across the Curriculum. I jumped in and out of the sessions trying to capture as much as I could about the themes so that I could translate the information into a recording (well, actually two - I did the Maker Education and Robotics by myself and split the CS Across the Curriculum with Penny). The great part about this was that there was a lot of room for personal creativity, but also a chance to work collaboratively with others to say, "Hey, I need some help!". By the end of the three days, Penny, Matt, and I had shared some long nights drawing and many laughs. I am so grateful that I had the opportunity to work with them!
Over the course of 3 days, Penny, Matt, and I spent our days surrounded by paper, pens, pencils, markers and had dirty hands and tired feet at the end of the day. I think all those things are a testament to the work that goes into capturing the content for a conference - but I wouldn't trade it for anything!
On the final day of the conference, we did not do any graphic recording, but rather covered foam board with our recordings and set up a hallway display on easels. I think the true impact of all the learning that happened over the previous couple of days hit me at that time. I had spent the weekend meeting new people, learning new things, seeing really cool things in practice, and stepped outside my comfort zone to do something new and exciting. It is hard to put into words how I felt when I saw the hallway with all of our recordings displayed. What was even more powerful was watching others who attended and presenters view our work, talking to them about what they learned and shared and how it was represented. It was pretty hard to ignore how the power of imagery can enhance a learning experience. Simply powerful.
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