3 ways to make the most of education conference season
January 21, 2020
The educators we work with are passionate about learning and connecting with other people, and that’s why they tell us that educational conferences are such a welcome source of inspiration for them.
Part networking, part continuing education, part solution shopping, conferences give you the chance to immerse yourself in new ideas, technologies, and best practices you can take back to your school. Plus, getting away from the day-to-day gives teachers and administrators a new perspective on their roles and an opportunity to connect with other professionals who are passionate about kids and education too.
At LanSchool, one of our favorite aspects of attending educational conferences is meeting with educators in person. There’s no better way to learn about your experiences, goals, and the outcomes that matter most to you than by meeting you in person and listening.
Are you considering attending an educational conference this year? Here are our tips for making the most of your investment.
1. Pick the conference that’s right for you
Every conference will have a slightly different focus, so ask yourself what you’re hoping to get out of the experience. Your answer could be new project ideas, research-based insights into education best practices, networking with other educators, one-on-one time with edtech vendors, or any number of other things. Once you’re clear on your goals, you can narrow down the list of conferences and make the selection based on your budget, schedule, and location. Here’s a great list of 2020 educational conferences you can use as a starting point.
2. Plan your schedule in advance
Conferences are busy events, and sometimes the hardest part is choosing which sessions and social gatherings you’ll attend. Do your research in advance to identify the sessions you’ll benefit most from attending. You may even want to plan with a colleague so if there are two competing sessions you’re interested in attending, you can split up and share notes. Be sure to leave yourself flex time to walk the exhibit floor — challenge your assumptions about what you can learn at a conference by listening to pitches from different vendors. Even though you may not buy their product, talking to vendors helps inspire innovation and can expand your horizons. And don’t forget to make conversation and network.
3. Come prepared
Depending on your role and expectations for the event, you may want to bring networking tools like business cards or address labels with your name, school, and email address listed. These will come in handy when you want to add your name to a mailing list, sign up for a free publication, or enter a contest. We recommend all attendees be prepared to speak about their role, school, tools, and processes. It also helps to have a few questions of your own – this will make networking a breeze. If you’re there to learn from sessions, be sure to bring something to take notes in. Stay engaged with sessions by jotting down questions for the speakers as they talk. We’ve found some of the most valuable content of a learning session comes out of the Q&A at the end.
LanSchool’s upcoming events schedule
If your conference research leads you to attend any of the following upcoming shows, we’d love the opportunity to chat with you about your experiences and 2020 goals. As part of the larger Lenovo product ecosystem, LanSchool is uniquely positioned as a key component in a growing end-to-end solution for educators. You can learn more about our mission and features here. Come say hello at the following events:
1. Bett Show – Jan. 22– 25, 2020; London, UK
We’re heading to London for Bett, an industry show that brings together over 800 leading educational companies and more than 34,000 educators and leaders from around the world. This conference is packed with sessions broken down into tracks including Future Technology and Trends, Empowering Teaching and Learning, Inclusion and SEND, Skills, and more. LanSchool will be in good company in the exhibit hall, where some of the biggest names in education technology and learning tools will be exhibiting.
Classroom Orchestration: Confidence in Teaching with Technology Wed., Jan. 22, 2:20 – 2:50 PM & 5:20 – 5:50 PM Schools Arena
Don’t miss our afternoon speaking sessions in the Schools Arena, featuring Lenovo Director of Global Education Solutions Rich Henderson and Global Education Solutions Manager Delia DeCourcy.
Where to Find Us
You can also visit us at Lenovo SL20 or stand NQ56 for a demo of our global and award-winning classroom management software and a special offer. Check out our Facebook event page to let us know if you’ll be attending Bett.
2. TCEA – Feb. 3 – 7, 2020; Austin, TX
TCEA’s annual convention showcases more than 1,000 informative learning opportunities, access to the latest edtech resources from hundreds of exhibitors, and countless opportunities for networking. This conference’s focus is on integrating edtech into the K-16 learning experience, so if you’re interested in practical applications for emerging technology, this may be a great conference for you.
Where to Find Us
Come meet our team at Booth #1817. We’ll be on site learning and offering free demos. We’d love to connect with you. Contact us on our TCEA Facebook event page to set up some one-on-one time with a LanSchool team member.
3. NCCE – March 4 – 6, Seattle, WA
We’re looking forward to visiting NCCE, the largest edtech event in the Northwest, created for educators looking to harness the power of technology to advance learning and teaching. NCCE will host full-day summits on Digital Citizenship and the Neuroscience of Learning, in addition to a one-day Minecraft Academy and more than 60 STEM-focused sessions.
Where to Find Us
We’ll have more details soon on our NCCE Facebook event page, so be sure to mark “Interested” for more information.
4. ISTE – June 28 – July 1, 2020; Anaheim, CA
ISTE is, perhaps, the conference that needs no introduction, and this year’s event will be just as full of valuable learning and networking opportunities as ever. The conference will feature four days of interactive workshops and hands-on learning experiences, as well as inspiring speakers and a trade show floor full of innovative education solutions.
Where to Find Us
We’ll be stationed on the exhibit hall floor at Lenovo Booth #483. Visit our ISTE Facebook event page and mark “Interested” to receive more information, coming soon.
Not going to any upcoming shows but still want to connect?
We’ll review research backed trends around the development of collaboration skills in the classroom, the importance of these skills for career and college readiness, and how educators can best utilize technology to encourage cooperative learning. This is a great opportunity to learn and connect – at no cost.
You can also always reach out to ask any questions, set up a personalized demo, or start a free trial.
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