Our 2011 conference took place on Sat 30 July in Belfast....and what an amazing day it was!
It started a little late of course. For anyone who doesn't know me timekeeping isn't exactly my forte! The ironic thing though is that I had sent a message to the teachers on Fri evening asking them to try to be prompt as the conference was only lasting a day and we had a HUGE agenda. Well that was before 'donglegate'. I needed internet access for the conference and on Friday became the proud owner of a 'plug and play' internet dongle. Plug and play? I don't think so! At 3am on Sat I was still plugging.... but no playing! I got up at 6am and tried again and gave up! So I arrived late AND exhausted...
It didn't take long for my spirits to be lifted and tiredness forgotten. The warmth and enthusiasm of the ladies was infectious. It was so lovely to see everyone together for the first time. Last year we were only 4. Thanks to Bahia and Laura we are a 6 piece this year! Even more fab ideas to put into the pot. Brilliant!
Of course we had technical hitches with internet and projectors and laptops... but no technical hitches affected our vocal chords - they were well used on Saturday!
We were joined by Bill McCartney from Net4WiseOwls for a fab, friendly and informative presentation on social media. He also helped us develop our social media strategy. I loved the fact he was so honest about not only our strengths but also areas for development. His forthright approach has made me reflect on my approach to social media thus far. It made me realise that, until now, I have missed the opportunity to harness the skills of the fab teachers to fully engage in social media. So I will tentatively be starting to let go of the reins....... and am so excited about what's to come!
We were lucky to be able to continue to chat to Bill over lunch, which was a team effort, and quite frankly scrummy! And of course we managed to squeeze in a couple of photos.
After we said goodbye to Bill we had so many topics to cover so got down to business. What a productive afternoon! We shared ideas about the new website that will be launched this week and covered various other topics relating to our current programmes and plans for development. It was a brainstorming thunderstorm! So much information and ideas shared.
I headed home exhausted but elated. I had a smug smile on my face as I am so proud of the Sign2Music team. We all have such different but complimentary skills. And yet the values and ethos which is the core of Sign2Music is shared by every one of us. Now that's what I call a team!!!
Can't wait to see what next year will bring......