Today was a long, long day for me with my travel to DC that started with a 7AM flight, a short layer over, and then arriving finally at 11:15ish. One of the DENLC from Raleigh, NC (Katie Bollinger) provided an airport shuttle service today which was quite helpful. It was nice to not have to worry over cabs, uber, the metro, or any of that. Katie had been here for a few days for Leadership Council things, and so was willing to help us out. As a first time Discovery Education Summer Institute (DENSI) attendee, this was extremely helpful to me.
A BIG Welcome
Upon arriving at American University, my carpool mates and I went over to the AU cafeteria for some lunch. I got to see Karen Ogen, our SC DENLC leader. The group there was sharing tips on how to get through this week.
At 3PM, we were processed for check-in, which included room keys and quite the assortment of gifts.
A DE Photo-op
We had a photo-op later with Lance Rougeux, the Vice President of Learning Communities and Educational Consultants at Discovery Education where he leads the Discovery Educator Network professional learning community, among more (read about him here!)
Picnic Dinner with More Swag
Next up was the kick-off dinner, picnic style, followed by our big welcome. We listened to welcomes from Porter Palmer, Lance Rougeux, RJ Stangherlin, and guess speaker Trace Dominguez of DNews. Each and every one was extremely inspiring, filled with community, and all about making each and every one of us a better educator. At this opening event we were showered with more Discovery Education Swag. I hope to blog a follow up that details some of what is in this picture. Some of theses items have a very interesting story.
Secret Attendee Gift
I need to blog another time to explain the significance of some of these items, but I will go ahead and share that Cheryl Lykowsi‘s gift I happened to have the honor of receiving is famous from her area because of the tv series MASH. The Hot dog sauce was referenced many times by Klinger in the show, and there was even a complete episode about the infamous hot dog sauce. Read about Tony Packo’s and the sauce, as well as its connection to MASH here. Wish I’d been that creative with my gift brought and given to another attendee.
Trace Dominguez, DNews
I especially enjoyed Trace Dominguez. I tried to embed a Twitter search that includes his user name and the tag #DENSI2015 so as to give viewers a context for what we enjoyed. Tonight it looked pretty good. Hopefully tomorrow and later on it will still be good.
First DENSI2015 Team Meeting
We are known around here as the DENtastic Ten, and we connected tonight. After serious housekeeping (reminder of policies, tomorrow’s sight seeing details, and more) we did an icebreaker activity that was fun. We had to say four things about ourselves as an introduction, but one of the statements was a myth (or lie). It was fine to have the group try to determine what was a lie. The miniature magnifying glass was a way to remember our team ice breaker activity. We quickly brainstormed how this could be used in classroom settings.
…starts a fun filled day of sight seeing in Washington, DC with this large group of educators from around the world (around 150.) It’s late even as I blog this, but I felt it was important to share while it was fresh in my mind. Most of my roommates are already asleep. Hopefully, I’ll check back in tomorrow!