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ISTE 2014 – Keynote – Kevin Carroll

June 30, 2014

These are my notes from the various sessions and conversations and activities at the ISTE 2014 conference in Atlanta

VIP seats! Dave and I got to sit in like the 8th row, right in front of the stage! Awesome!

The Young Fellaz band was playing the opening, and they were incredible!

Here’s Brian and Kecia….


Kecia reminded us that the hashtag #iste2014 has been trending worldwide since the start of the conference, and the hashtag has been tweeted over 475,000 times.

The main presentation started with a video presentation of the ISTE 2014 Award Winners..




Ron Chandler – CIO for Los Angeles Unified School District – Big 10 Ed Tech Leaders. Largest 1:1 iPad roll-out on the planet.

Currently in the midst of the roll-out, about 990,000 students. So far 128,000 iPads. Seem to have been in the paper a few times. Learned a few things – big one is: People just don’t want to see this happen. It’s not a bold effort, we really don’t have a choice.

Where are you, going into the next year.

In Early Fall, will go to the Board and ask for permission to start phase 2. May use different types of devices for secondary. By this time next year, around 300,000 devices will be deployed.

Project that is lead by instruction, powered by technology.

Have to engage the teachers as soon as you can, and if you think you’ve done it enough, do it twice over. Conversation shouldn’t be about the device, but rather, about the student.

LA has over 12,000 homeless students. Having a device lets them tap into learning 24×7. Some come to school so they can eat.

So far has received a lot of support from ISTE and colleagues around the world. Really appreciated it.

This is critical work.

Any wisdom?
– Reach out to people and tell them what you’re doing
– You’re going to get some pretty negative things, and some venom. You’re going to need a tough skin. Probably should’ve discussed this more, earlier on.
– It’s totally about the team, you need a strong team, and a good team to get it done.
– Pull the students in
– At the end of the day, it’s about the classroom

It was excellent listening to thoughts and ideas from Ron Chandler.

Kevin Carroll
Everything that I ever needed to learn, I learned on a playground.



As a kid, moved so many times, in the middle of the night. Mom would pick him up and take them somewhere different.

When you are the kid who is first at school, on the early bus, there for breakfast and learning, you get a lot of attention. And it is well received.

Kevin shared part of his story growing up, parents that weren’t there. Taken in by his grandparents, for the first time got to play with other kids and belong.

When he was nine, got his first library card, and has maintained his library card in every city he’s lived in, ever since. Currently he is 55.

Kevin has a Chief Encouragement Officer – Miss Lane, who would always say “Why Not?” But not just permission, but accountability.

Grandfather would ask how his “Want to” was, can’t do anything if your “Want to” is broken.

Everyone needs a CEO.

Kevin learned 5 Slavic languages and served in the military for 10 years.

Kevin asked us to resign as an adult for a few minutes. Put away your grown-up stuff, and be a kid.

NBA, Nike

Human Katalyst? –

Play is the highest form of research – Albert Einstein

Nike Tag

Community is about doing magical things, inspiring others.

You can discover more about a person in an hour of play than in a year of conversation – Plato

Play is serious business. Brings communities together.

We all speak ball. – ball that charges in 30 minutes, will run a light for 3 hours.

If your dream doesn’t scare you, it’s not big enough.

Simple Truths from the playground and other folks
– don’t talk about it, be about it.
– Learn three languages – language of your peers, language of respect, language of the world (are you comfortable and confident in any setting)
– Shift your gaze, look up once in awhile.

– I have no special talents. I am only passionately curious – Albert Enistein

Kevin’s presentation was spectacular! I was engaged and felt connected through the entire thing! His courage and conviction to play and connect people to play is awe inspiring, and I am looking forward to utilizing some of his thoughts and ideas… Perhaps his book will be the next one we use within our department…

Might seem like small acts, but collectively we can be great!



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