Dust or Magic Events - App Fests, Institutes, Camps, and Master Classes across the globe and led by one man’s vision to make a difference in the education of children. If you are a developer, reviewer, teacher, librarian, or clinician, you need to go - at least once. Multiple times always proves to be a better experience by being able to stay current on the “State of the App” a phrase coined by the Dust or Magic founder, Warren Buckleitner. AND we all know that the “State of the App” changes rapidly depending on current technology and trends in education. At all events, there is an overview of the pedagogic approaches that are currently in practice. Dust or Magic teaches how to cut the wheat from the chaff based on current research, and that means a lot when perusing the thousands of apps at the App Store that claim to have educational benefits. Everything is fresh and new with an app that is magical and can be used again and again, but an app that is considered dust may seem beneficial at the moment but does not stand the test of time to excite and facilitate active exploration. Yep, there are all those things you’ve heard of… early a.m. trumpet calls, 12 a.m. reviews, show and tells, and eagerly the letting go... saying goodbye to your ego as it burns slowly away for the duration of the conference in a crackling fire. Only a few are caught digging through the ashes for remnants, but they are better left as embers ebbing away. The ability to remain open through that little act can leave you speechless in the wake of another’s knowledge and experience. It’s as if leaving your ego at the door allows the light of other’s knowledge to shine through, ready to use and explore. There is a spontaneous insight that is brought about collectively by sharing experiences, uses, and evaluating an app through a variety of “lenses” to achieve goals in a children’s development. What is the frame of reference? How does one professional use an app that may be different than another? What is the intention of the developer in terms of the learning objectives? In what ways can I apply this information directly to the kids I see? It is at Dust or Magic events that I have gained a more critical eye on what makes an app beneficial vs. one that seems promising but sizzles and burns out over time. What are you using and recommending to families or schools to include in their curricula? Let the experts – (yourself included) guide your way. At Dust or Magic events, one can learn from others’ experiences as well as inspire. And you may be the one that lights that spark in others by sharing what you know or do. Every event is original, and one to cherish, as it begins to shape – NOT dictate – how you experience and view learning and teaching children. And that is through the lens of a child discovering knowledge for the first time. Check out the Dust or Magic events at http://dustormagic.com/welcome/
Written by Jo Booth
Jo Booth has been an Occupational Therapist for over 30 years and currently works in Pediatrics with early intervention. She sees kids newly diagnosed on the spectrum as well as medically fragile kids. She loves to move, explore and play every day; so that “her kids” grow up to be healthy independent learners.
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