Thanks for stopping by the community for a conference update. My name is Joe Rommel and I have the pleasure to serve as the 2019 conference chair. Before the 2018 conference had even begun, in fact before it was even 2018, the board of directors was working on the 2019 conference theme. The theme we chose was Cultivating Curiosity.
MACUL Board and Special Interest Groups begin this task with a request from the conference chair to submit ideas. This list is compiled and shared with the group at large and at some point electronically voted upon. Personally I think choosing a theme is very important work as it serve as more than just a short tag line that shows up on promotional materials. I believe a well thought out theme can function as a guide for the conference planning.
In discussing cultivating curiosity it was apparent it had many meanings. To me, it was about the sense of wonder I wanted my students to feel when learning. In my 15 years in the classroom this was always the magic of being a teacher, to open up the world for students, to infect them with curiosity. One of the best ways to promote this excitement and wonder is with a deeper understanding of technology and the power it has to connect and showcase the world. I think the conference graphic captures this sentiment perfectly.
Others I spoke with focused more on the educators that attend MACUL. So many of our attendees are drawn to the annual conference out of curiosity to enhance or maintain their skills as a teacher. As such our theme revolves around the curiosity of the teacher as well. The conference must fulfill our work to create, maintain, and quench that sense of curiosity. If the conference does this well then it will help teachers not only answer the questions they arrived at the conference with, but also provide them with new questions to ask! In this case the theme has been a guide.
Whatever your interpretation I hope you choose to cultivate your curiosity by attending the MACUL Conference this year in Detroit and return to your school, building and classroom ready to spread wonder with your students!
See you in Detroit! For more information about the 43rd annual MACUL conference visit maculconference.org.