Saturday, June 21, 2014

Star Struck at All Write 14

What an amazing two days I spent in Warsaw, IN for the All Write 14 Conference.  If you live anywhere in the midwest (or don't mind travelling), you should definitely put this conference on your schedule for next year.

I met some wonderful new friends and the line up of speakers was a "who's who" of educational bloggers and the literacy world.

Wednesday evening began with a dinner that Ruth Ayres arranged at the hotel restaurant.  Imagine a small group of 60 teachers & presenters together in the back of a Benigan's Restaurant, moving around and chatting constantly!  I don't even know how our two waitresses kept it all straight.  I met some wonderful new friends who adopted me as their dinner company (I was travelling alone and many people already knew others) and had a great time.
Thursday began with a wonderful keynote by Ruth Ayres about how important it is to find celebration even in tough times. 
I learned so much from Franki Sibberson about digital literacy and have lots of new tools to try out when we go back to school in the fall.
In the afternoon, Colby Sharp of the Nerdy Book Club talked to us about why it is important that we tell our own stories. It was a great way to end the day!!

On Thursday night, we had dinner with Barry Lane and he entertained the crowd with songs about education. So funny!
 Friday was spent with the Book Whisperer herself - Donalyn Miller.

Donalyn shared an hour's worth of book recommendations with the crowd.  Listening to her speak was like having a conversation with an old friend.  She has such a wonderful presentation style. I could listen to her for hours!
I also saw Donalyn's presentation about reading conferences and came away with more great ideas.
Kristin Ziemke had some great ideas about how to use technology to enhance learning.

Whew!  That's a lot of learning.  There were so many sessions that I wanted to attend that I wished I could have cloned myself.  I heard Cris Tovani, Stephanie Harvey and Kelly Gallagher were amazing as well!  If you want to hear more of the conversation, check out the Twitter feed at #allwrite14.  (I took so many pictures and tweeted so much that my phone's battery ran down to 15% both days.) 

I already have All Write 15 on my calendar for next year so I can go back and meet up with my new friends. For being a smaller literacy conference, the organizers of All Write 14 did an amazing job bringing in some big name presenters and other literacy experts that were so inspiring!  Can't wait for next year! 


  1. Wow - this looks fabulous! I wonder if I could get my school to chip in on my attendance....hmmm......:)

    Mrs. Spangler in the Middle

  2. Wow! I love a good conference! I just discovered Donalyn Miller! I'm reading the Book Whisperer and Reading in the Wild thanks to The Brown Bag Teacher's Book Study. Where have I been? Chris Tovani is a favorite of mine. Can't wait to read about your new ideas sparked by all that learning!


  3. You have me very interested! I'm going to look into this for next year!!


  4. What a good time it was! I loved reliving each moment you highlighted. I'm so glad we got to meet, hopefully I will be back next year, too.

  5. Wow! What an incredible wrap-up. It makes me remember my excitement last year when I was also alone, but not for long. As soon as I went to dinner, I was surrounded by my friends. I hope to come next year.

  6. Jennifer, it was wonderful to meet you and spend an evening dinner in laughs and discussion. Your highlights are incredible; love your pictures! I look forward to sharing with you through blogging.

  7. Awesome! I wish I could have been there! Franki Sibberson is one of my all time favorites!

    Fit to be Fourth


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