Greatly looking forward to the ISAS (Independent School Association of the Southwest) Teacher Conference next week.   The slate of speakers is very impressive, I think, for a regional conference.  I am delighted to be able to see two speakers who are great influence to me in my leadership and writing–Tony Wagner and Dan Pink– and I am looking forward to the others as well.   I am also very happy to be working with ISAS as an official blogger for the event.

My plan is to post an entry after each session,  summarizing highlights from each speaker, trying to embed in my summaries links to articles or other websites they reference, and  of course offering some commentary on how their ideas relate to my vision of 21st century education.    There is only one session in which two speakers are presenting simultaneously; Thursday at 2:00 both Andrew Zucker and David Eagleman present.  I am drawn to both, would love to attend both, but I think I will attend the Zucker.  So I invite any of you attending the conference and choosing the Eagleman session to write up a report and email it to me, and I will post it here (with full credit to you).

Readers are also welcome to join the conversation; use the “Leave a comment” button to submit a post, which does require my approval for publishing.   I welcome all kinds of opinion, and you are welcome to be critical of ideas; my only requirements for approval are that you identify yourself (no anonymity) and that you avoid fierce personal attacks.

For those of you looking to prep for your conference by doing some quick reading about some of our presenters, I invite you to read some of my previous posts.   For Dan Pink, you can read here about his New Year’s Day 2010 “teleseminar” and also see his TED talk about his new book Drive, though in the latter case I should give you a spoiler alert that viewing this video might reduce the pleasure of seeing his ideas live on Thursday.

I have written very often about Tony Wagner here at 21k12blog; our St. Gregory faculty read his book last summer and have been discussing it all fall.   There are several pieces on the blog, including this one about Chapter 1, and this one about Chapter 2, about our faculty’s discussion responses to his book.    I have also written about all the ways we are using Wagner’s book here.   Tony himself, I think it is appropriate to say, is a regular reader and occasional commentator himself on this blog, so you can expect that comments you post here to my blog about Tony Wagner will be likely read by Tony himself.

I also am an admirer and student of positive psychology, the subject of our last speaker at the ISAS conference.   If you are interested in a lighter piece about this topic, I invite you to read my remarks to my students linking happiness research to the plot and character development of the film Avatar.