Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Always Learning: Reform Symposium

Summer is a time for having fun, and that is certainly what Mrs. Yollis has been doing! 
She swam with turtles, observed Moray eels, and many other fish!

Summer, like anytime, is also a time for learning! 
At the end of July, Mrs. Yollis was an online learner at the Reform Symposium e-Conference!

This FREE online conferences had  80 presenters and 12 keynote speakers! Mrs. Yollis was thrilled to be able to learn from incredible teachers located all over the world, and she did it all  
on her laptop computer in her home!

Each online classroom was an elluminate room and looked very similar to this:

Used with permission from @ShellTerrell

Mrs. Yollis attended many session and learned about new innovations and tools that she can use in her own classroom. Because it was an international conference, some of the sessions were scheduled in the middle of the night, Los Angeles time! In addition, there were so many interesting speakers, Mrs. Yollis had to make some tough choices about which sessions to attend.  Luckily, the half hour presentations were recorded and are available for learning to anyone!

 Here is a link to all the sessions!


Not only is it important to learn from other people, it is also important to help others. Mrs. Yollis volunteered to be a moderator for her good friend and quad blogging buddy, Mrs. Morris!
Mrs. Morris lives in Australia and has a fantastic class blog called 2KM and 2KJ. In addition, she also has a professional blog called Integrating Technology in the Primary Classroom where she shares information for educators.

Mrs. Morris' presentation was called Connecting With Global Blogging Buddies
Here is a link to her presenation.

Besides being in the classroom, where are some places that you learn?

What is something you discovered this summer?


  1. Hi Mrs. Yollis,

    I absolutely love learning from you and Mrs. Morris! She did a stellar job, as usual, and having you there helping her out as moderator just made the power of PLN so real because we got to experience your friendship.

    Some of the new places I learned this summer were ISTE, RSCON, I took an online class but don't want to discuss it because it was horrible (so I guess I learned what I disliked), and there have been multiple Twitter chats that I've participated in. -- I initially learned about the Twitter chats from you, so thank you!

    Kind regards,
    Mrs. Watanabe

  2. @ Mrs. Watanabe,

    Thanks so much for your kind comment! Not only was I happy to help Mrs. Morris, but I also fit nicely into her topic...Connecting with Global Blogging Buddies! :-) As she shared, there are so many wonderful outcomes of blogging and friendship is certainly one of them!

    I thought RSCON was an exceptional conference, and I thought it was important for other teachers to hear about it. However, I also want my young students to understand that learning continues throughout a life. Just because I am a teacher, I am still learning myself.

    Looking forward to continued learning with you!

    Your friend,
    Mrs. Y♥llis

  3. @ Mrs Watanabe, thank you so much for your kind compliment! That really made my morning.

    It sounds like you've had a great summer of learning!

    @ Mrs Yollis, what a great post to demonstrate to your students that you really are a lifelong learner.

    As you know, I really appreciate you moderating for me and I think we make a great team.

    RSCON certainly was an exceptional conference. I only wish I could have got to more sessions but I am looking forward to watching more of the recordings.

    Your blogging buddy,
    Mrs M☀rris

  4. Aloha Mrs. Yollis,
    I love learning from both you and Mrs. Morris! I had to listen to the archive,since I was travelling back from Boston, but it gave me the time to really sit back and absorb.
    This summer was a busy learning time for me. I attended the Punahou Brain Symposium, ISTE, and Alan November's BLC. Along with Twitter and my PLN I could say my days were very full and fruitful.
    Attending the conferences also allowed me to meet members of my PLN, which is exciting in itself, and meet new people too.
    Time well spent.
    A Hui Hou my friend,
    Mrs. Jacobs

  5. Thanks for sharing your amazing learning experiences. I want to learn more about participating in global conferences and shared learning. Your students are lucky to have a teacher like you. My best, Ms. Devlin, Fourth Grade teacher, Wayland, MA

  6. @ Mrs. M☀rris,

    It was a pleasure moderating for you at the RSCON3 conference! Our professional and personal relationship is evidence of the power of connecting! I agree, we make a great team! :-)

    There were so many great sessions! Like you, I am looking forward to listening in on the ones I missed.

    I do think it is important for young children to see that learning goes on beyond the walls of a classroom and beyond graduation. It's an important message that I know you share.

    @ Mrs. Jacobs,

    It's mutual! I feel fortunate to have connected with so many educators all over the world. I'm a better teacher because of those relationships!

    You have had a summer of learning! I listened to Langwitches' presentation and Steven Wolphram's at BLC. It's been a learning summer for me too...only I've been attending from my house. Amazing!

    It must be fun to meet people from your PLN in person...maybe one day we'll meet. I hope so!

    @ Ms. Devlin,

    Thanks so much for stopping by and for leaving a comment. This was the second year I've attended RSCON and really recommend it. Luckily, all the recordings are available so we can all take part at any time. However, it was a thrill to be in the audience during the recording. I recommend it!

    Another recommendation I have is to join LearnCentral. Steve Hargadon has regular webinars that I think you'd enjoy.

    Mrs. Y♥llis

  7. I also enjoyed learning at RSCON3, but one other fun learning experience I had was spending a week in Illinois learning about the life of Abraham Lincoln and how the American Civil War took a toll on our country. I was with 39 other educators from all over the country. We listened to teachers, visited places important to Lincoln, like his home, office, and the state capitol. We even saw his tomb, which was protected with a huge shrine because back in those days there was always the fear that someone would steal the body of the person who had died.

    Mrs. Yollis, you wrote a really good reflection on your RSCON3 experience.

    Mrs. Krebs

  8. Dear Mrs Yollis,

    Thank you for sharing this wonderful post as I am not a teacher but I just love the concept of learning and sharing with each other. I feel I do and have learned a great deal each time I visit your blog and Mrs Morris's

    Thank you for sharing this well informative post with us non teachers too.

    From your pal,

  9. @ Mrs. Krebs,

    Like you, I thoroughly enjoyed the RSCON experience. There were so many great sessions that I had a hard time making choices. Plus, I was spending the weekend with my in-laws, so it was tough to navigate the conference and spend time with them. Luckily, everything was recorded and I've been enjoying learning that way. In fact, I just listened to your great session about Adding a Map to a Wiki. Here is a link to your slides: Adding a Map :: slide show.

    Because we are all so connected, it's great to have the visual of a map. I added myself while I was listening to the recording! :-)

    What an experience to have that week learning about Abe Lincoln! Can you share a few facts that you learned about Lincoln from your trip? My students would love to learn from you!

    Thanks for contributing to RSCON! We are a wonderful community!

    @ AA,

    We are all learners! That's what so great about all the online blogs, conferences, and wikis. The opportunities are out there for all to join!

    Your friend,
    Mrs. Y&hears;llis

  10. Dear Mrs. Yollis and third graders,

    I enjoyed learning about Abraham Lincoln this summer. I took many photographs of the Land of Lincoln in southern Illinois. I'm giving you a link to my Flickr group where I shared the photos with a Creative Commons license so you can use them if you ever have the need.

    Here are a few of the things I learned about Lincoln:
    ** the family had a dog named Fido.
    ** Lincoln has become a symbol of freedom and democracy to many people, and they come from all over the world to visit Lincoln's home in Springfield.
    ** Lincoln's sons were naughty :)
    ** Only one of Lincoln's four sons had a long life.
    ** Lincoln has no living ancestors.
    ** It was a long and hard decision for Lincoln when he issued the Emancipation Proclamation.
    ** Many people think our country couldn't have survived without Lincoln's leadership during the Civil War.

    He was a very complicated person, and I enjoyed learning just a bit about him.

    I know you will learn much this year. Have a wonderful school year with Mrs. Yollis!

    Mrs. Krebs

  11. I am in love with this extravegent blog. It has so many visitors that I am flabbergasted. I love blogging because it connects people with the big wide world. If you want to visit my blog to give me some tips please come to my blog at

  12. Dear Mrs. Yollis,
    I loved your post about RSCON3! I attended as well and it was such a relaxing way to learn and connect with teachers and librarians around the world.

    It was my first experience at this type of online learning and I definitely want to do it again.

    I especially liked seeing some of my new "virtual" blogging and Twitter friends. We haven't met face to face, but we feel like friends nonetheless.

    I wasn't able to attend all of the sessions, but hope to listen to the podcasts soon!

    Excellent and informative post!
    Mrs. Hembree

  13. @ Mrs. Krebs,

    Wow! Thanks for the fabulous facts about Abe Lincoln! I'll be sure to share the information with my students!

    @ StarQueen9,

    Thanks for stopping by and for leaving a comment. We've been blogging for a while, so that is why we have so many visitors! Keep at it and you will too!

    @ Mrs. Hembree,

    I thought the RSCON3 conference was outstanding too. I've attended a few different e-conferences and find them so valuable. Being able to tap into professional development that meets your personal interests is so important!

    Yes, I have been listening in on the ones I missed too...another great advantage!

    Your friend,
    Mrs. Y♥llis


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