For the past several years I’ve enjoyed presenting here in my home state of California, as well as the opportunity to travel and meet new educators across the country (for a list of my presentations and conferences, check out p. 3-4 of my CV).
Here is a slide deck from a recent presentation for the Oregon Music Educators Association in January 2021. I think it is a fair, current representation of my thinking and ideas as a presenter at music education conferences.
Couple of items worth sharing here. I really dig Google Slides because you can essentially make them into a website, which is how I am able to embed it above. Also, it has always been a necessary ingredient in my presentations for attendee engagement. Inside that slide deck are links to additional content so they have an active voice in their learning and can interact with the material. For example, head down to slide 18, advance through the guiding questions, and click on the padlet link (or go here).
When I present at a conference session, I bring with me a digital box of resources to share with the session attendees. One of my aims for the educators that choose to attend my session is that they leave with ideas and resources that they can take with them and use right away with their students.
To accomplish this when I first started presenting, I would set up Google Classrooms and have attendees join where the content for the session was organized. Although, dealing with GC join codes, only able to accept specific gmail addresses to join, and taking too much time out of the 50-60 minute session, I started making Google Sites as the repository for items that I referenced in the sessions. There, I could share the session slide deck, sample lesson plans, and instructional videos from open Google docs, as well as examples of the activities from embedded video/audio. Here are a couple of examples of those sites:
There are a couple of reasons actually, for starters, perhaps it is a result of my constructivist nature to make meaning from my learning experiences. Recently, I have dabbled in designing and building websites (here is one for the California Music Educators Association) out of a genuine interest and hobby.
As it relates to Google Sites, any design/material that I share at a session are intended to be examples of what teachers and students can make on their own. I have asked all of my students, from grades 6 through undergraduates, as well as adult learners to consider using Google Sites, or any other platform of their choosing, as a digital portfolio of their work. Google Sites is fairly simple to learn and is available to almost anyone – students and teachers – with a G Suite for Education account through their school.