Excited for my third SEE Summit at SMART Headquarters
By Renee Fruge
Hello from hot and humid Louisiana! In just a few short days I will be returning for my third (yes, third) trip to the North American SMART Exemplary Educator (SEE) Summit 2012 at SMART World Headquarters in beautiful Calgary, Alberta (if you’ve been visiting the blog, then you know the first EMEA SEE Summit in Hamburg, Germany just ended).
When I applied to be a SMART Exemplary Educator four years ago, I had no idea that I would have opportunities that would change my life, and attending the Summit has definitely done that!
I have been reminiscing about the Summits I have attended and I want to share a little of what I brought back.
While I have been preparing for my trip, I cannot stop smiling. In part, because I love SMART and I feel very important just being at SMART’s World Headquarters! However, after attending the Summit twice, I have learned that the most valuable things I returned home with were the friendships I made while I was there. This year will be no different. A week is all I will spend with these new friends, but I will leave with a treasure of resources in the people I will meet.
How is that you ask? These new friends will become my Facebook friends, Twitter followers, Email buddies, and so much more. We will follow what others are working on, post problems we encounter, and help solve problems for others. We will post pictures, blogs, and lessons, and we will share, follow, encourage and collaborate. The friends I make may be as close as a few hundred miles or as far as across an ocean. Yes, I have a smile.
Not only will I be meeting and getting to know the 50 newest SMART Summiteers, but I will also be catching up with some SMART employees who also attend the Summit and have become my friends. It is these people whose jobs are to make my life as a teacher, easier, yet challenging, exciting, and just plain fun! (Really, who doesn’t love writing with that crayon on the SMART Board interactive whiteboard!) These SMART people are so willing to sit and listen to teachers, administrators, and tech people, tell our stories, our questions and our ideas. Much of the time at the Summit is spent having SMARTians (SMART employees) ask us questions about what we think, how a product could be used, or any idea we might have. That is one of the things I love about SMART, I always feel like what I say matters, because they are always listening. Yes, I am still smiling…… but I have to start packing!!! I will keep you posted on the SEE Summit 2012 and all of my new friends!
The North American SMART Exemplary Educator Summit takes place from July 15-21, 2012 at the SMART Headquarters in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
About the author
Renee Fruge has been an educator for eight years, teaching fourth-grade, special education, and currently teaching second-grade at Evangeline Parish School District in Basile, LA.
Fruge has been a SMART Exemplary Educator (SEE) for the past four years and has attended the SEE Summit at the SMART Headquarters in Calgary, Canada, the last 2 years. She is also a technology instructor and has presented SMART Content sessions at the district, state and national level. Fruge has also successfully written several grants for education technology and other products and is currently a grant writing mentor for her district.