Thursday went very well. The various arenas of my life all seemed to meet up quite nicely, and I have to say I truly enjoyed the side-by-side comparison of the districts I work for.
But first, let me just say that Ryan is as thoughtful and amusing in person as he is on-line. We didn't get to have much in the way of conversation because he had laryngitis (poor man). I did way more talking than he did (again, poor man), but he did bring some really fun pictures of his near 2-year old daughter. What a cutie she is! He's going to be presenting at WERA next year, so get those meetings on your calendar now.
As for my presentation? I SO rocked it. I can't claim that it was well-attended (at least compared to the two sessions I sat in on), but I had a very enthusiastic audience. In fact, I had my own personal cheering section, composed of three people from my afternoon district (including the ass't. supe), excellent questions to discuss, and I only neglected to mention a few ideas from my notes. I have thought about using Slideshare to put a copy of my powerpoint here, but I don't know if it would make all that much sense. I'm not one of those Death by Powerpoint people. I have a brief outline present on the slides to guide discussion---as opposed to using the powerpoint as a text to read aloud to the group.
Anyhoo, as I mentioned mere sentences ago, the ass't. supe of my afternoon district was on hand, which meant that immediately following my presentation (which exceeded the standards), she went into the hallway to make some phone calls on my behalf. While my morning district took more than two months to think about my research proposal for my doctoral study before turning me down, the afternoon district only needed an hour to see what I have to say "Yes." I'm still not officially allowed to research (yet), but I just need to file the paperwork. Other phone calls which will be of help to me were also placed...but I can't talk about those right now. :)
Here are some other interesting things about the experience. My morning school district (where I have worked for 12 years) had about 15 people from various walks-of-education attending the conference. The number of people who came to support me in my session? One---who was really there out of curiosity about grading. (To be fair, I told one friend she didn't need to come to my presentation as she already knew what I would be saying.) The afternoon district (where I have worked for two months) had three people other than me attending. They all came to the presentation to support my efforts. My morning district paid no expenses for me (although they did for their other attendees). My afternoon district? They paid no expenses, either; however, they are going to have me do part of my presentation in some of their schools and will pay me for that in order to reimburse my personal costs for Thursday. When the day was done, the morning district peeps took off for their own devices. The afternooners? They invited me to join them for a frosty beverage and asked me to dinner.
I'd do a Venn for all of this, but there's really not much to compare...is there?
In total, it was a long, but very worthwhile, day. I got to shake myself out as an educational researcher. I got to know lots of fun new people. I got my project back on track. And I got to see who loves me, baby. In case you were wondering, I'm doing just fine.