Let me tell you about the Edublog Awards ceremony. It's truly something else. It's hosted in an online environment called Elluminate Live, where a presentation can be given by moderators as attendees log in, listen to speakers and view slides, chat in a sidebar and, at the discretion of the moderators, can have their mic turned on to speak. The organizers did a fantastic job at conducting the ceremony and it was quite an experience. After an intro, we were asked to show our location by placing a star on the map (it was definitely an international crowd, numbering usually around 100 as people came and went). Then it was time for the first category-mine!! I was quite floored when the SpeechTechie logo and my face appeared on screen under the word WINNER, as the moderator read a description of my blog written by Chris Bugaj (thanks again, Chris, for the nom). I "raised my hand" by clicking a button to show I was there, and the moderators turned on my mic and I said "Thanks, guys, I really appreciate it..." And then that was it. Somehow, through either a technical glitch or a button I nervously pressed, everyone thought I was done and they moved on. Hahaha! Anyway, it's fine and ultimately a humorous, ironic moment to happen to the author of a blog focusing on speech and technology. Is it ironic or just unfortunate? Can my Canadian slpeeps ask Alanis? The rest of the ceremony was wonderful to listen to (though eloquent speeches by educators and students made me feel a bit of a tool in comparison), and again I say kudos to the organizers for a great job. Check out the other winners and runners up here.
So what I wanted to say would have been something like this: This is about YOU, the readers and visitors and emailers and commenters and tweeters, so thank you. When I started this project somewhat impulsively last February, I didn't really know if anyone would read it. Edublog award notwithstanding, what's going on in our SLP (and other educator) social media hangouts (including all these places and #slpeeps) is remarkable, and speaks to a need among all of us that often really fly solo in our workspaces and feel isolated, whether we are SLPs, therapists, SPED teachers, or techies- we are finding a way to connect and share and collaborate online! Technology itself isn't the point either, it's that we are exploring ways to engage our students (and ourselves) while building skills in educationally relevant and fun contexts.
Having actually won is just gravy- it was really marvelous to be on that list in the first place, and to have you reading. Please check out all the nominees (click on the categories on that page to see all nominees) over your holiday break-that list is a gold mine that I'm still mining. Congrats to everyone!
Oh, and I get to keep this: