I'm awake in the wee hours of the morning, no doubt, in part, because my brain is buzzing. Day One of USDLA 2017 is in the rear view mirror but the effects are ongoing. One the e's of e-learning that Elliott Maisie got us to consider in his opening keynote was energizing as he demonstrated by getting us out of our chairs talking for a few seconds to a person at another table. It was also a brilliant way of showing how the power is shifting from the "teachers" to the learners as he had to repeated call to get our attention and get us back in our seats. Once turned loose to explore learners often don't want to be reigned back in. But the energy in the room was palpable.
Of course, as I write this I am fully aware of the irony of talking about a bunch of people who spend their time and energy devoted to "distance learning" coming together physically. But the notion of distance and how we transverse and compress it is at the heart of much of what we do. And sometimes the best way to combat distance is to come together. While relationships can be forged across the cyberways, there is nothing like putting the people, at least for a short time, in the same physical space. It compresses time in a way and friendships come more quickly and more authentically.
I'm not doing justice to the experience of the conference in this post, but this is another irony. I haven't mastered the balance of capturing the moment in the moment while also being in the moment. I usually choose the latter and reflect back later, but sometimes that loses a bit of the emotion. Immediate reaction and reflection are both important to consider though.
Well, the sun is coming up and telling me it's time to prepare for Day Two. Stay tuned.