Reflections and Resources from Tarheelstate Teacher: Pics from TPT Vegas
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Pics from TPT Vegas

Taking pictures with "strangers" is SO not me. I didn't want to scare anyone, but then I thought, these rockstar teacherpreneurs deserve to feel like rockstars and I want my darn picture with them.{Believe me} within 30 minutes of being in Vegas, I was star-struck! My biggest regret is not being gutsy enough to get a picture with Paul or Amy and by the time I was ready to just run up and snap a picture of them, it was time to go! If you go next year, be brave! Take many pictures! You will want them! {Don't forget to read my Vegas ah hah! moments from the teachers pay teachers conference, too!}

So who did I meet in Vegas?

Angela Watson from the Cornerstone For Teachers. I've been following Angela for a while, but I've really been paying attention in the last few months. She has so many articles on her blog that resonate with teachers. One of the first articles that grabbed my attention was "Why I Quit My Teaching Job Mid-Year." The honesty is something ALL teachers need to hear. I hope to write a similar post myself to share my experiences working at the same school for 9 years and then deciding to walk away last year. Angela has a way with wisdom and the ability to say things in such a concise what that they stick with you. Check out her book "Unshakeable: 20 Ways to Enjoy Teaching Every Day...No Matter What." It's a perfect gift for a first year teacher, but also filled with amazing advice that will help seasoned teachers cope with all the challenges we face. I pretty much stalked Angela's sessions, the Motivational Panel and Expand Your TpT Expertise and Impact. In the second session, I literally could not write fast enough. I thought about staying for the second round of that session just to try to soak it in again.
Michelle from the 3am Teacher...what more can I say? I was starting to think that I wouldn't find Michelle, but before a session, I stopped at the business card table and she popped up there! I'm so excited that she's going to be designing my blog and now we've had the chance to meet in person. I LOVED that the hubs could see this whole new blog design thing is legit. Oh, and isn't she so darn cute in person?!?!
Meg from the Teacher Studio was like #1 on my list of teacherpreneurs to meet because I fell in love with her teaching resources this past school year. I feel like I have blog stalked her and enjoy seeing what she's up to in her classroom. I feel like I get her. I think like her. She does a lot of inquiry-based teaching in math. I found her concept sorts for math this year and used them to launch~every~single~unit. I can't see how I could ever teach math without them again! I would've never recognized her but I turned around at the Vegas Blogger Meetup and saw her gigantic logo button and flipped out! "Oh my gosh! I am a major fan!"
I ran into the Evil Math Wizard when I was grabbing lunch! I noticed her logo badge {note to self, logo badges are extremely important for recognition}. I LOVE the Evil Math Wizard's teaching materials. And her store name always makes me think "I'm evil enough to make you LOOOOOVE math. Wahahahha."
At one of our networking opportunities for uppergrades, I grabbed a picture with Jivey from Ideas by Jivey. I think I scared her a little :) but she was such a sweetie! I'm excited to start implementing her Mentor Sentences next year in writing!
I ran into Jen Jones from Hello Literacy and had to snag a picture. I adore her for two main reasons: 1) a love of all things literacy and 2) she lives in the "Tarheelstate" too.
I've followed Laura Candler all of my teaching career. I still remember the file cabinets of free resources that I would peruse through during my planning time. I had to say hello when I saw her at the uppergrades networking opportunity. She's also another teacher in the tarheelstate {notice a trend?!?!}. You can find her blog at Corkboard Connections.
I met Clark from 21st Century Math Projects. Now, he creates resources for high school, but I have been following him since he first began his store because his math focus is on real-relevant, 21st Century materials. In his words "Real World Authenticity, Mathematical Rigor and 21st Century Swagg" are key to strong math projects and lessons. He works hard to make connections between what kids care about in the real-world and how that relates to using math. I can imagine so many students learning more and being "into" math because of the ideas he shares. He's a true role model of mine because I want my math materials and lessons to do more than simply teach the skill.
And the last two pictures, THE Deanna Jump and THE Rachel Lynette at Minds In Bloom. I was star-struck. I was too shy to go up to Deanna at the Vegas Blogger Meetup but after a day in Vegas and seeing so many people I admire, I couldn't stop myself from begging for a pic. Rachel asked what my store was and I said "It doesn't matter who I am. It's YOU!!!" She was so darling. I loved hearing her tell her story during the keynote! These women are truly believable with unbelievable stories!

Can you tell I had a great time? My husband told me last night that he finally figured out his favorite part of being in Vegas. He loved seeing me in my element. He loved seeing me get so excited about people I recognized {and that he knew nothing about} and he loved being there to help take pictures for me. Can you say #keeper? I love that man and I thought it was so nice of him to LOVE this part of being in Vegas!



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