Archive for June, 2011

Most Inspiring at ISTE

There were many inspiring individuals at ISTE this year. Keynote presenters, author Dr. John Medina of Brain Rules for Education and Stephen R. Convey author 7 Habits of Highly Effective People delivered thought provoking presentations.

Muriel Summers

What was most inspiring to me was listening to Muriel Summers, Principal of A. B. Combs Elementary Leadership Magnet School in North Carolina. Principal Summers shared how she used Covey’s principals on leadership to unlock the potential of her students.

Principal Summers introduced the audience to two of her graduating students. The young men (11 year olds)  stood on  stage presenting to thousands and captured our hearts. They  were so excited to share their involvement with a mentoring program  using technology to video Skype with students of the University Florida. During a question and answer session with the audience they shared how the student body plays a role in teacher hiring!

Covey says,  “leadership is communicating people’s worth and potential so clearly that they are inspired to see it themselves. Leadership is a choice not a position. He stressed that teachers are leaders and  should help students see their full potential. ” The two young students were very articulate and passionate about the Covey principals. They were very confident in their beliefs and clearly are strong leaders in their school. The entire audience was inspired by their stories and the remarkable accomplishments of Principal Summers.

Here is an inspiring video of Principal Summers when she presented in February at the Global Education Summit: link here

The theme of the conference was “Unlocking Potential” As a leader in the franchise industry, I left the largest technology education conference inspired to unlock my own potential and the potential of those around me!

CE Attends ISTE

The annual ISTE (International Society for Technology Education) started off on a inspirational note this year!

Here are some Tweets from Cyndee Perkins, Director of Curriculum and Program Development and I today:

  •  Qualified, engaging teachers will build a core of students capable of computing and creating innovative tools: S. Rainwater
  • The emotional stability of the home is the greatest predictor of school success.
  • If you want to design an optimum learning environment based on How the brain works, you would NOT have a classroom
  • Dr. Medina (Keynote) – “Every brain is wired differently and learns differently!”
  • Dr. Medina (Keynote) – “Human learning occurs in the alleyways and boulevards – why do we put kids in classrooms?”
  •  Sitting in session where her handout of top 20 web tools is posted.
  •  Online collaborative learning needs a pedagogical change … no more “sit and get” … use interactive discourse via Twitter and Facebook.
  •   Session on Education 3.0 (Buzzword, Fad or Salvation) starting with”Wizard of Oz” music! Love the presenter’s sense of humor!
  •  Best quote of the day “plant content on your kids device” by Lucy Gray
  • High Techpectations
  •  Mobile learning and mobile media definitely technology education trend this year!
  •  Follow #edapp for tweets on educational apps
  • The future is in the “cloud”
  •  Beyond literacy to information fluency in the age of InfoWhelm!
  • 5 A’s of information fluency -ask, acquire, analyze, assess and apply
We had a full day and will be back tomorrow to unlock our potential!  Come along with us by following our Tweets  with the hashtag #CEatISTE

Connecting At A Conference

I am super excited to attend the ISTE (International Society for Technology in Education) annual conference next week. Cyndee Perkins, COMPUTER EXPLORERS Director of Curriculum and Program Development is also attending and we have our conference planner filled with exciting sessions and keynotes to attend!

As ISTE Corporate 100 Members there are a few events that Cyndee and I will attend together. But … we plan to divide and conquer when it comes to the sessions and the trade show so that we are covering as much as possible.

Steve Dembo aka @Teach42 on Twitter has a great blog post on “What not to do at ISTE”

Here are a few of my “what to do at ISTE”:

  1. Do your homework -Ask yourself who might be attending that you can spend time with face-to-face? Is it a LinkedIn connection? Someone you follow on Twitter? Reach out before the conference and schedule a day/time to meet. ISTE is a huge event! Don’t leave a meeting to chance.
  2. Take notes – This is a no brainer. Of course you are going to take notes but how can you take notes and share in real time? Twitter! Cyndee and I will use the conference hashtag #ISTE11 but will add our own #CEatISTE11. This will allow our community to narrow the ISTE Twitter stream to our Tweets. Use your Twitter stream when you return to write your blog post about the event.
  3. Build new relationships – Online social networking is great but now is the time to step away from the smartphone, iPad or other electronic device and shake hands. In every session I make a point of introducing myself to the people next to me. I like to ask questions and learn as much about my session neighbor as possible in a few minutes.
My iPad and laptop are ready for the trip. My iPhone is loaded with the ISTE mobile app, Evernote, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Foursquare, Bump and QR scanner.
I’m ready to connect and hope we have the opportunity to meet!

Franchising Goes Social

Sometimes what seems a little  ridiculous turns out to be a pretty darn good idea.

Melissa Giovangnoli-Wilson

It all started with the Social Geek Radio Show: Networlding and the Science of Social Networking (link here). Our guest was Melissa Giovangnoli-Wilson Founder of Networlding and author of 11 books including Networlding which was #10 on Amazon for one year. She was convinced that both AK Stout and I have stories to tell. We couldn’t argue that fact. What took us by surprise was Melissa suggesting that we tell our stories by publishing! Really? Write a book?

She asked that we at least consider attending her “Book Writing Workshop”” in Chicago. Guess what? We are and we are committed to writing our own books! AK has decided that her book will be: Social Networking Your Way to Your Career: A College Student’s Guide to Using Social Media To Land a Job. She has actually started writing it! Visit her Facebook page to learn more:

My book will be called: Franchising Goes Social. I started a  LinkedIn group where you can post your suggestions and topics that should be covered! To prepare for writing the book,  I am working with AK Stout, Thomas Scott (Brand Journalist) and Jack Monson (Engage 121) to host the first Franchising Goes Social BootCamp. Our goal is to provide educational content in a one day hands-on session in Nashville, TN October 22nd. We want every attendee to walk away with best practices and clear action steps to implement. Topics will include but not limited to: SEO practices and visibility, social loyalty programs, social media policies and legal issues, lead generation, etc.

Please connect with me on LinkedIn and contribute your thoughts and suggestions for both the BootCamp and the new book. It’s a work in progress and I can use a little help from my friends!


I had a “Duh”  moment this week.  Since this was a “Duh” technology moment, I  believe that I might not be alone.

Watch the short (45 second) video below from DataDoctors @MactasticGuy.

I love video Skype. I wrote this post, “Technology Makes Dreams Come True” about using Skype with my military son during his deployment. Little did I know that I could easily move the video box under the camera so we would be looking directly at one another! Seriously, how did I not know that?!

Now, if someone can tell me how to move the video box for the iPhone I’ll be in great shape!

I was once a Blackberry user and raving fan. It’s probably a great smartphone for a lot of people like my friend Dana Lopez but now that I have been an iPhone user for a few months I won’t go back!  It has become my main and sometimes only computing device!

Here are my 5 reasons why I wouldn’t do without an iPhone.

  1. Skype – I have used Skype for several years on my computer. I started by using it to do international calls with franchisees and then moved to video conference calls with franchisees and staff. Having family in several other states and a son who was recently deployed, Skype is an awesome app to conduct calls at any time on my iPhone. Here is a video of an iPhone demo using Skype:
  2. Echofon – I tried Twitter and TweetDeck for the iPhone but to date my favorite Twitter app is Echofon. I like the push notifications of direct messages, mentions, replies or if someone has favorited one of my tweets. Tweeting is very easy and allows the user to upload a photo or video instantly. Here is a good explanation of Echofon capabilities:
  3. Kindle – I loaned my daughter my Kindle because I was not using it. She absolutely loves it and won’t give it back. I decided to give the iPhone Kindle app a try it when one of my favorite authors, Seth Godin was offering one of his books for FREE via the Kindle. I am pleasantly surprised that the small screen doesn’t stop me from whipping out my phone when my schedule allows me the opportunity to read a few chapters.  Watch this short review of the Kindle iPhone app:
  4. Evernote – No longer do I carry a pad of paper and a pen with me to take notes. I love to create to do lists and since my iPhone is with me at all times I have my lists with me and I don’t have to hunt for that piece of paper! It could be a task list of things that need to be done at work or simply a grocery list. The beauty is that everything I put into Evernote is searchable. You can add tags and organize your notes into different notebooks. I’m still learning but so far it is proving to be a great resource. Here is a quick YouTube video on the benefits of Evernote:
  5. Conference apps – In February I attended the IFA (International Franchise Association) annual convention.  There was a mobile app for that! It included the schedule of events, speaker information, session’s details and more. I loved it!  In June I will be attending the ISTE (International Society for Technology Education) annual conference and I have the app downloaded and ready to use. I now find myself expecting an app for a conference or event that I attend! Eventmobi is one of many apps tradeshows and conferences

What apps are your favorites?

I Want To Be A Geek!

I’m sure I’ve said it before and will continue to declare “I want to be a Geek!” Two of the best Geeks I know, look up to and have a lot of fun with are AK Stout and BJ Emerson.

GeekItOut - Cool Website List

AK amazes me weekly on Social Geek Radio in the GeekItOut segment. She shares Websites and information that is fun and informative.  You can find the complete list here. (The segment was started by the #1 Geek, BJ Emerson when we started Social Geek Radio a year ago.)

BJ Emerson

BJ joined us on Social Geek Radio last night to discuss using social technologies to reward brand loyalty. There was a fantastic article in Hospitality Technology titled “Reward Point Revolution” which you can find here He says that he thinks “ that part of our job is to provide visibility to what’s going on online related to the brand.”

We had a lot of fun and if you missed the show it’s archived on iTunes or BlogTalkRadio.

So if you want to be a Geek  or want to learn something new about social technology then follow AK and BJ. I promise you at the very least it will bring a smile to your day!

What’s Your Klout Score?

Michael Cohn,  founder and Chief Technology Officer (CTO) of CompuKol Communications LLC has a great blog post explaining Klout scores and why it is important. You can find his post here He says, “The Klout score is a metric of your total influence online. The higher your Klout score, the larger and more robust your sphere of influence. The variables that go into calculating a Klout score are interesting and important for business.”

I work hard to provide relevant content and information to my followers on Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn. Klout is one resource to help me understand my true reach and  level of influence. According to Klout, I am a “Specialist” and they say “You may not be a celebrity, but within your area of expertise your opinion is second to none. Your content is likely focused around a specific topic or industry with a focused, highly-engaged audience.”

I didn’t realize how competitive I was until I started using social media. I find myself competing for  foursquare badges with my daughter. I compete for mayorship’s with co-workers Lorri Wyndham and Charmayne Redd. I compete against Brian Conrey for leaderboard points.

The picture below represents my new  competition obsession with Gini Dietrich, CEO of Arment Dietrich. Her Klout score is higher than mine. You can take my word for it or you can click on the picture below to open and see that I’m 20 points behind her. She ranks as a “thought leader.” I’m satisfied at this point being a specialist with 2k followers. I don’t believe I need 18k+ followers to make a difference. But…I would like to catch up to Gini with more points and become more influential in my community!

Watch out Gini, here I come and I just might have some help from “our” friends!