Wednesday, July 1, 2009

NECC ISTE Makeover

For those of you who may not know...this is the last NECC ever. Yes you read me right.
The last NECC ever. But if your jaw has not hit the floor, (and just in case it did, ask someone near you to pick it back up) the conference lives on- but it will now be known as ISTE. (or, the conference formerly known as NECC..we just need a symbol now)

As you may have read in my last post, my shock that Apple was not at NECC. I continued pacing up and down the exhibit hall, in a daze when I had an epiphany. It happened while standing in front of the Google booth, or I should say booths- or really Google playground. I had a flashback as I stood in front of Google, what I saw happening at the Google spot was familiar. But in my flashback, the name was not Google, the location was smack dab up front, grabbing your attnetion as you entered the exhibit hall. CROWDS, and crowds of educators, salivating who could not get enough of Apple, Microsoft, and others. But fast forward, getting out of the flashback, and there I was staring at Google. As the reality set in about Apples absence from NECC ITSE, it hit me-OPEN SOURCE, freeware- I predict that within 3 years, you will be greeted in the exhibit hall with open arms by Google, Open Office, ZOHO, Scratch, and other open source organizations. Googles exhibit spot was packed from start to finish, and the number of Google workshops, breakout sessions, and poster sessions was unprecidented. Scratch was a close second. Open Source is all the rage, and is not the flavor the month but here to stay. I predict over the next three yeras, most educational software companies will be a distant memorie on the exhbit floor of NECC or rather the conference formerly known as NECC.

Thoughts anyone????????????????????????

Sunday, November 9, 2008

NECC 2009

As I wander through the Exhibit hall at NECC 2009, something is missing, I can't put my finger on it . Something is not right, things dont' feel the same. An emptiness creeps into my NECC mood, and it is nawing at me, and my inner self insists that I find out what is causing this uncomfortablefeeling, like an itch that needs to be scratched, but you just can't reach the scratch to get relief. I look around,and it suddenly hits me, and I think, no- this can't be right. Clearly I just missed it. So I pace up and down, back and forth, looking, searching, finally, I realize, it is true- APPLE COMPUTERS IS NOT EXHIBITING! My first NECC..... Apple not only had a huge "playground" they were the sponsors of the NECC Bag one receives at registraton, I still remember my first NECC bag, it was the Lands End Beach Tote, with NECC ISTE embrodered along with the Apple Logo. This is I think my 10th NECC. Many things have changed since my first NECC.
Years ago exhibitors went all out on booths, give aways, and sponosring- I remember I got notepads, highlighters, water bottles and more in my bag. This year there was nearly nothing. The bag pretty much consisted of the final schedule, a couple flyers- that was pretty much it. A sign of the times.

Where is Apple? I ask peers, friends, strangers, it just isni't right I say to them...What is NECC if Apple is not here. I was like a child looking for a lost dog. But alas, Apple I think, is finding like others, that the cost of exhibiting, doesn't even come close to breaking even (via sales.)
and that marketing dollors are best spent in other ways.
It was also announced that NECC ISTE will now be ISTE- next years conference will not carry the NECC branding.
So what does this mean for the future of the traditonal conference? What does this mean for exhibitors- dare I say- the lanscape for professinal sharing, and learning about new producsts are about to face profound changes in a very short amount of time.............
thoughts anyone?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008


I had a great time today introducing STEM concepts to the staff and faculty. Please let me know
if you have any questions about the ideas, resources, or topics discussed. If you
have any resources or ideas you would like to share please send them my way.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Freeware, Open Source etc.

Hoping you found the information useful. I am always open to suggestions to make the presentation better..and if you have any you woule like to add please send them my way!

I will create labels shortly by topic with links to various freeware/opens source leads.

Please share this with as many educators as you think will benefit.

Lets make this the best community spot of shared info as we head into the
"STEM" age of education.

Monday, September 29, 2008


Welcome to everyone attending ACEC. I hope my presentations are beneficial.
Feel free to share ideas, links, comments and more.

Hands on Products for the STEM classroom


PIE (Playful Inventing and Exploration) This site has many ideas for using Pico Cricket in the classroom
.Institute for Computing Education (at Georgia Tech) -lesson plan ideas and resources.
Ideas from Playful Invention
Lifelong Kindergarten-MIT-Media Lab


Bee-Bot- Designed for the Early Childhood years, the Bee-Bot provides hands on experiences with direction, distance, estimation, and other math concepts.

Pro-Bot-Based in LOGO technology, children use LOGO commands to experience angles, distance, direction, creativity, programming, and cooperative learning.
RCX- use sensors to collect data or create an event to happen.
Build, design, program, and create! Easy to use with infinite number of possibilities.

FREE Digital Resource Library-OneCommunity's OnceClassroom

The Digital Resources Library (DRL) is a free centralized online educational resource allowing educators safe access to digital learning materials, interactive video experiences, and classroom materials. DRL utilizes a federated search engine and has access to InfoOhio, EBSCOhost, Cleveland Clinic, WVIZ Ideastream and more.

DRL is made possible through a partnership the Cleveland Clinic, WVIZ Ideastream, and OneCommunity.

To learn more or sign up for a free account and training for your school please click here.


Educators are forever purging materials, moving, or starting a new career. You will find lots of those things you need in eBay.
That is where I get a lot of my materials.
Here is a little trick to increase your chances of winning that item without a bidding war-saving you money.
Check out
Auction Sniper. It does the work for you. You will see.
Check out this site. It has helped me numerous times!

Your eBay

STEM Educators Schedule, Bookstore and more

STEM Educator's Schedule
Laurie (a.k.a. STEM Educator) will be teaching the following classes at Idea Center at Playhouse Square. All workshops include a snack and/or light meal and free parking in the Playhouse Square Garage.

Register at
Contact Eric Siler at 216-916-6372 for workshop information
Contact Heidi Smith at 216-916-6372 for registration information.

A Digital Camera for You
Wednesday, August 12
1 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. ($290.00 Includes digital camera and memory card)

Ace the Acer Notebook
Friday August 21, 2009
9 a.m. to noon ($395.00 includes computer)

STEM Educator's Bookstore and More...