I am attending Confratute for the next 5 days at the University of Connecticut, and after the first evening, all I can say is “Wow! It will be an amazing week!" What is Confratute? Confratute (from conference, institute and fraternity) is an institute on enrichment-based, differentiated teaching held every summer at UConn. One of my school’s instructional coaches attended while teaching in another district and recommended that our PTA consider providing funds for some of our staff to attend. I was one of the lucky ones who got to go! Joe Renzulli, one of the directors, was one of the first names I heard when I attended graduate school for gifted and talented education many years ago. In fact, one of my assignments was to write a bio about him for a “Who’s Who in GT” type project in a special projects class. It was such a kick to see him in person.
I have spent hours perusing the course offerings available to plan out my week. I am most excited about some of the technology sessions. Just last week I was a reading about blogging with young students on Mrs. Patton's Patch. I am comfortable using technology myself, but I’ve been a bit hesitant to try much with my students other than using games or software with them during our weekly computer lab session. This year I want to explore other options : blogging, research and using other tools. I want my students to understand that there is more to computers than just playing games. I also want to attend some of the math sessions. The keynote speaker tonight was Rachel McAnallen and her topic was “Math Lies Your Teachers Told You.” She was very entertaining. After the speaker there was a reception on the patio complete with a DJ and adult beverages. (Although I was too exhausted from all the traveling to stay very long. I left Houston at 6:30 this morning!)
Stay tuned this week as I share what is happening at Confratute!