Friday, July 21, 2017

CONNECT Round-up

Thanks to my state organization (TAASLP), I was able to scratch off another thing I've always wanted to do off my list: attending ASHA CONNECT. I won free registration through a drawing. I entered at the very last minute and only bought 2 tickets...it was the second one that won.
A colleague & I made the 8 1/2 hour drive to New Orleans on Thursday. After our first encounter with the elevator, we found our room. Then we had to figure out how to get to where our registration materials were. The Hyatt Regency in New Orleans is not an easy building to navigate, especially when you're as directionally challenged as I am!
The reception was a little "blah"...a lot of people milling about in groups, not really mingling with each other. We grabbed a cookie and made plans to meet up with a group of SLP friends.
Hmmmm...I wonder where those beads came from?
The CONNECT app was very convenient, especially when the slides were downloaded. With my iPad, it was very easy to take notes directly on the slides. The slides on the overhead were very hard to read, so having them on the iPad certainly came in handy.
I have to admit that I was a bit disappointed in the sessions. I hoped to go away from the conference with some real, practical applications that I could take back to my school and my students; however, I left pretty empty handed. That's not to say that I didn't learn anything, but I didn't leave with that burning desire to get back to school so I could try some things out with my students.
A couple of sessions were very worthwhile, though: Social (Pragmatic) Communication Disorder: Best Practices for Assessment and Intervention (Carolyn Timler) and Clinical Decision-Making in the Assessment of Bilingual Students (Lisa Bedore). The session on Ethics presented by ASHA Attorney Heather Bupp started out very lively, but as people began to bring up their own personal situations, it started going downhill.
That didn't deter me from having a good time! I am lucky enough to be friends with Mia, who is from the area. There was a whole group of us from all over the country who descended on Cajun Country. We ate, we talked, we laughed...it was like we had known each other forever!
The whole crew at Willa Jean
Okay, it seems like we mostly ate!
Annie demonstrating how to eat a beignet while wearing black
We call our little group "Splitcoast Speechies" due to all of us living all over the country: NHOh, Tn., La., Tx., OrCaCo. Our Colorado Friend wasn't able to make it and she was sorely missed. From the first minute of catching up with them on the street, it was like we had known each other forever!
Love this picture that 3DSLP made! We missed her!
We certainly missed Colorado, but she was with us in spirit! Small Talk SLP made these super cute bracelets for us.
These ladies are my heroes. Friday evening, we met up with more SLP bloggers/TpT Sellers for dinner.
I'm not sure who took this picture, so I can't give credit!
Saturday, we managed to roll out of bed for our 8:00 session; several of us ended up in the same session.
Ready to learn!
It was nice to have a friend sitting with me in sessions. That doesn't always happen when you go to a conference.
Enjoying some friend-time during a session
We visited some out-of-the way places, thanks to Mia. This was a sweet place that had a backyard with tables set up; if you could grab a seat, you could comfortably sit and listen to live music.
Ready to listen to some music
The weekend was over too soon as one by one each one in the group headed home. I hope we can do this again!
Last dinner together-minus one

Disclaimer: I did not take some of the photos in this post. I would love to give credit where it is due, but I have no idea who took them! Shout-out to Laura's husband, who I'm fairly certain took some of them! 





1 comment:

  1. I think Steve, our waiter, took the big group photo at Trenasse. It was a fabulous four days with wonderful personal and professional "connections" made. I'm grateful ASHA provides us with these opportunities.

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