On the train to ISTE11!

Well, we made it! I had horrible dreams all night long that I was going to sleep in and the train would leave without me! Thankfully, I woke up right on time at 5 am and made it to Amtrak CLT by 6:30 am. My family waved goodbye and Zulma and I took off for Philly right at 7 am. Currently I am tethered to my iPhone as this train does not have wifi. Bummer! The 3G is working well though. Zulma is doing grad schoolwork and I am blogging with my personal hotspot, so…so far, so good! 

We are about to work on episode 3 of “Jenny and Zulma take Philadelphia” since we will be on this train for another 11 hours! 🙂 We will be discussing dining, sightseeing and getting around in Philly. I’ll be talking about Yelp, the Reading Terminal Market and famous Philly landmarks while Zulma will share some cool apps that she found. 

The ride is a little bumpy! I have not been on a train since I was a little girl and I love it just as much as I did then. See, I am not much of a flier since I had a horrible experience flying to Mexico with my husband for our honeymoon almost 6 years ago. Let’s just say that the plane hit a large amount of turbulence and there were snacks and drinks flying, flight attendants falling and people screaming. Yeah, I flew once more a year after that and almost died of a panic attack. I like to keep my feet on the ground. 🙂 

Currently I am reviewing the sessions that I’ve been adding to my conference planner. This is my first ISTE conference, so I know that I have a lot to learn and that I probably won’t have time to attend everything I would like. Since I’ve been working with ELLs for the past school year and have taken on an iPad pilot in a middle school and high school ESL classroom, I am really looking forward to the ESL-specific sessions. One of these is ESL: Making Connections to Community, Family, and School”. The presenter will be sharing ESL Tech projects in which she had students use iMovie and Google Earth to present their autobiographies to the class. It has been a while since I’ve used Google Earth with students and I am looking forward to being inspired by this ESL teacher’s ideas. 

My iPad project is exciting, but overwhelming at the same time because there is a lot riding on it. I have to have specific goals in mind for the implementation and I need to be able to provide measurable objectives and formative assessments which document the value of using iPads in the classroom. Therefore, I will be attending many sessions on iPads. One of these iPad workshops that I plan on attending is EPUB: How to Create Interactive E-Books for the iPad. I think ELLs will benefit from being able to create their own e-books, so I believe this 3 hour workshop will be well worth the time! 

I’ll share more of the sessions I’ve highlighed on the planner shortly…More updates to come! 

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  1. dougbutchy

     /  July 6, 2011

    Great blog! I was wondering how long your train ride was from Charlotte to Philly with stops. My sister lives in Charlotte, and I thought it might be fun to take a train!

  2. techgrl

     /  July 6, 2011

    Thanks!! It was a 12 hour train ride to Philly….SO much better than driving because you can get up and walk around. We plan on taking the kids to NYC via Amtrak in November! 🙂


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