Wednesday, June 25, 2008

On my way to NECC 2008: Face to face has high value

I am in Hong Kong for a few days on my way to NECC 2008 in San Antonio. Yes, I can hear you say, '...but San Antonio would be quicker to get to from Doha via the Atlantic rather than the Pacific route?!', and you would be correct, except that after NECC I then have to come back to Australia for a few weeks before going back to Qatar. In fact, with side trips in the USA and in Australia this year I have estimated I will be spending about 80 hours in the air over the next 2 months, not including time to get to and from airports and wait for flights. I'm looking forward to the frequent flyer points to be earned....or am I?? I hate flying! There is no joy in aeroplane travel, food, comfort (!) or in most respects, convenience, however as an international educator, this is what I do.

NECC 2008 in San Antonio will be the best ever this year! I have been attending NECC for the past 6 consecutive years...Seattle, New Orleans, Philadelphia, San Diego, Atlanta and now San Antonio. It will also be the busiest! I have some wonderful sessions to attend and deliver and great educators to meet and converse with. My schedule is full (literally) of meetings, flat classroom sessions, international meetups, ISTE gatherings etc. I really value the face-to-face opportunities NECC provides. These complement the year-long virtual gatherings and interactions and provide an opportunity for cementing friendships further, for planning projects, sharing successes and failures, and moving further along the path of 21st century learning as a professional educator.

Just thought I would share this photo with I write this it is evening in Hong Kong. It has been raining all day due to the tropical cyclone that was meant to have missed here and gone to Taiwan, however we woke up to wind, rain and clouds this morning. Tonight the rain has eased and the lights are on full once again. What a magnificent city! it has been 23 years since my previous visit, and what changes have occurred! What a sophisticated and tourist oriented city, what a fantastic shopping haven amidst beautiful scenery and a juxtaposition of cultures.

So, this is what I am looking at now, the night lights of Hong Kong, seen from my hotel window in Kowloon. See you at NECC!

Hong Kong night

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Anonymous said...

Hi Julie, I'll be attending NECC online again. I'm so grateful that so many sessions are podcasted. I'll be looking for your workshops...
Great photo, and I can't imagine so much flight time in 2-3 months- a few days ago I sat in the jet for 2 hours before even taking off. It's very uncomfortable, but I try to remember we don't have to cross the oceans by boat anymore (that doesn't really help after many hours in a tube miles above land and water).
Enjoy San Antonio- I hear it's a great city.

mpstaton said...

Hope you had a good one! I've been following from afar.

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