Apr 20, 2018
Welcome to The Teaching Space Podcast coming to you from Guernsey in the Channel Islands.
Hello and welcome to Episode 16 of The Teaching Space Podcast. It's Martine here. Thanks for joining me.
Today's episode is not going to be in the usual format. It is taking the format of an audio diary.
Let me tell you why....
On the 23rd, 24th, and 25th of March, there was a Google Summit in London, and I was lucky enough to be asked to speak at the event. This is my first time speaking at an event like this as an educator and a Google Certified Trainer, and it was quite nerve-racking, I have to say. I thought it would be a nice idea for the podcast to record some audio snippets from the event and share them with you, so what follows is an audio diary covering my experience. I hope you enjoy it.
Ooh, before I forget, I should mention the audio I recorded was on my mobile device, so if the quality isn't as good as normal, that's the reason. Okay, let's go.
Hello, it's Martine here. I thought I'd record an audio diary of my experience of the London Google Summit. I've just arrived at the Lycee International de Londres. Please excuse my pronunciation.
Well, it was a bit awkward getting in. I had to speak to the security guard, and they checked my name, and it wasn't on the list, and it wasn't on the list, and then it was on the list, so that was interesting, but I'm here now, and I appear to be the only one. My obsessive approach to punctuality was paying off there as usual.
I'm in a gorgeous classroom, and there is coffee, and there are croissants because it's a French college, so I'm going to help myself.
I shall check in later and let you know how my sessions go and what I learn from the sessions I attend.
Hello. It's Martine here.
Okay, so I have just done my first session, and it was called How to Mark Smarter and Faster With Google.
This was a session I was delivering. When I said I've done my first session, I mean I've delivered my first session. It was an hour long, and it went really well. It was well attended, and we did about half an hour's sort of chit-chat and demonstration and a bit of presentation from me, and then we had half an hour for people to basically have a play with the tools that I taught them about.
The three tools that I shared were Loom, which is a Chrome extension for recording your screen.
I also showed the learners how to open up Google Keep in Google Docs and, essentially, store your frequently used feedback comments in Google Keep on a sort of digital Post-It Note and then open that up within Google Docs and then put your comments into comments on Google Docs, if that makes sense.
I will share a video explaining that in a bit more detail. I promise I did a better job in the session that I delivered.
I also shared how to use Google Forms with the quiz option enabled, and this allows you to create self-grading forms or quizzes, and that can be really useful for formative feedback because you can input a variety of different types of comment based on whether the learner has got the answer right or wrong. So if someone's got an answer wrong, you can then maybe signpost them to extra resources like a video or something like that.
If you were doing a quiz on English punctuation, and someone did an apostrophe wrong then selected the wrong answer, then you could maybe direct them to a video about apostrophes.
Those are the three things I covered.
Link: How to Mark Faster and Smarter with Google Presentation . You will be able to jump into that presentation and see lots of other links. I hope that's useful to you, and I will try my very best to record a little sound bite after I've done my next session.
Now, my next session is The Life-Changing Magic of Electronic Filing. My audience was a bit quiet this morning, so I'm not entirely sure how that's going to go down with them, but let's see. Over and out.
It's me. I just finished my second session, which was The Life-Changing Magic of Electronic Filing. It wasn't as well attended as the first, I have to say, but I kind of, on the fly, converted it into a very informal sit around the table and talked about Google Drive, and that actually ended up working really well, so I'm really pleased.
Hello. It's me again.
I thought I'd record a final reflection on the whole experience. Just to give you a bit of background which I should probably have done this at the start.
The reason I knew about these Google Summits was that the company that organizes them, AppsEvents, came to Guernsey and did a Google Summit, and it was really good, very well organised great speakers, and all that stuff.
I attended the summit and kind of sat there thinking, "This is awesome, but I could probably speaking because I know some stuff too as a Google certified trainer," so it was going to the initial summit that kind of made me have the confidence to pitch myself as a speaker for this London event. The fact that it was in London and it wasn't too difficult to get to, it was a quick flight, also made it really appealing.
I find it really hard pitching myself for things. When I was 20, I think I would have had no problem pitching myself at all, which is really ironic, as I knew a heck of a lot less when I was 20, but I think, as I get older, I get a little bit more anxious about things like that. Anyway, I pitched myself. They wanted me to do the summit, and that was all fine and dandy.
Reflecting on the whole experience of being a teacher and a speaker at these type of events, I can honestly say it was brilliant.
I had some great conversations with people who I'm really hoping will end up listening to The Teaching Space Podcast as a result.
Met some amazing teacher folks and education folks who I'm really hoping that I'll have further contact with and they'll be sort of people I can share ideas with in the future, so just simply from a networking perspective, it was fantastic.
From a personal development perspective, I've pushed myself outside of my comfort zone by pitching myself for an event and being anxious about it. The two sessions I ran went very well.
On reflection, the second one was not pitched at a high enough level for the group, but then I didn't really know that until I got there, so that was a useful learning experience. It looks like most people who attend these events tend to be on the more advanced side, so I know that for future, which is brilliant. That being said, the people that I worked with had a great time, so I'm really happy.
The feedback came in, and the feedback on my sessions was really good, excellent, in fact, so I'm thrilled about that. I am hoping that AppsEvents will want me to work with them again, so sort of major reflection on it being pushing yourself outside your comfort zone is a really good thing. It's been a confidence boost.
If you ever, dear listener, get an opportunity to speak at an event of this nature, then I really encourage you to go for it. It is nerve-racking. It is, like I said, pushing yourself outside your comfort zone, but I think the learning I got from it far outweighed the anxiety I initially felt, as it usually does when you put yourself outside your comfort zone.
From a learning perspective, I didn't attend too many sessions because I was kind of wanting to balance my energy on the day. That was another sort of positive move on my part, I feel. I didn't go to all of the sessions in between mine. I very carefully picked what I attended.
One of the highlights for me was I attending a session on Google Apps Script, which was a programming session to enable you to create extensions and things like that. Yes, it was as geeky as it sounds, I can promise you that, but while I didn't sort of, during the session, create my own extension or anything like that, I got a sort of foundational understanding of what Google Apps Script is all about, and it certainly made me interested in exploring that more.
All in all, a fantastic weekend. I'm really grateful to the people who supported me throughout it. I must give a shout out to my friend Gemma, although she won't be listening, but she put me up for the weekend. We had a lovely time, so that was excellent.
Like I said, if you get a similar opportunity, I really recommend you push yourself outside of that comfort zone and give it a go. That's me, over and out.
If you're a brand-new listener to The Teaching Space Podcast, then this is not the regular format, as I said at the start of the show, but a lot of my listeners were very supportive and keen to hear about how the event went, so in response to that, I wanted to share just a few thoughts and a few snippets, not particularly coherently, but it was kind of captured in the moment, so I hope that works for you.
I'm going to wrap things up now, but just before I go, if you are not a member of The Teaching Space Facebook group, it's called The Teaching Space Staff Room, then it would be great to have you there. We've had some good conversation going on recently.
It's a great place to network and share ideas and talk to other teachers in confidence, so hop over to Facebook and look for The Teaching Space Staff Room, and you can ask to join the group.
Thanks for tuning in to this episode, and I hope you'll join me next time.