PiLs European Forum Day 1 and 2


Well, it has been a struggle to get some time to do the 1st update from the European Forum in Lisbon, but I’ll give it a good try while I have a few minutes. Needless to say, the excitement level is very high and the Teachers have been presenting their work over the last. here are David Young (Limavady HS. Limavady NI) and Paul Rooney (Scoil Chonglais, Baltinglass Co Wicklow) at their stands presenting this morningDavid at his standPaul at his stand


We were warmly welcomed by Claudia Goya, General Manager of Microsoft Portugal.

imageThere was the keynote yesterday morning from Anthony Salcito, Vice President, Worldwide Public Sector – Education Microsoft Corporation
As Vice President of education for Microsoft Corp.’s Worldwide Public Sector organization,
Anthony Salcito works with education institutions and partners globally to embrace technology to optimize learning environments and student achievement. In this role, Salcito oversees the worldwide execution of Microsoft’s vision for education and its partnership and technology outreach efforts via the Worldwide Partners in Learning, Partners for Technology Access, and Public and Private Alliances programs.

Once again the year there are three concurrent tracks running throughout the Forum. besides the Innovative Educators Track, there is also the Schools track and the Education Leaders Track. Yesterday we saw a variety of workshops from a 9th Grade student (Kersten Thorndahl) talking about “Digital natives as drivers of innovation and change in education” to Mandeep Atwal talking about the “Shout Programme”.

After a wonderful dinner last evening at a traditional Portuguese restaurant in the Old Town part of Lisbon, we were ready for another day of excitement and inspiration. The keynote this morning was from Bruce Dixon.  Currently, he divides his time between his role as Director of ideasLAB, or the pro-bono work he does for the Anytime Anywhere Learning Foundation, and his consulting to Ministries of Education and corporations in the US, Australia, Canada, Europe, and Asia and he regularly speaks at national and international conferences around the world. His core theme to Educators is to “BE BOLD”.

Bruce was followed by two amazing and inspirational women. Liv Arnesen & Ann Bancroft
imageLiv Arnesen and Ann Bancroft are educators and explorers. Individually, they became the first women to conquer the poles. Liv made international headlines in 1991 by becoming the first woman to ever ski solo and unsupported to the South Pole, a 50-day expedition of 745 miles (1,200 km). In 1986, Ann dogsledded 1,000 miles (1,600 km) from the Northwest Territories in Canada to the North Pole as the only member of the Steger International Polar Expedition. Together in 2001, Liv and Ann became the first team of women to ski across Antarctica’s landmass, reporting via the Internet to classrooms around the world along the way. In 2012, they will lead a group of eight women, representing each continent, on an expedition to the South Pole, hoping to unite 2 million classrooms and 50 million students to transform Antarctica into the world’s largest classroom focusing on the issue of fresh water scarcity. Partners in Learning will be supporting and following the latest amazing challenge Your Expedition. From the website: In November 2012, renowned polar explorers and educators Liv Arnesen and Ann Bancroft will lead a team of six women, from six continents, on an 800 mile, 80-day long expedition to the South Pole.

Here are some photos from the 1st few days

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