Footloose and KOTESOL-free

So, the annual international conference was this past weekend, and I think it was a pretty good success. The attendees seemed happy, anyway. I had a good group of volunteers, so I was able to have a little more freedom than usual. I actually got to see a presentation!!! I also got to socialize here and there and check out the books on offer.

The amazing rep for Teacher Created Materials gave me a free book, because I was talking to a friend that she had offered a free book to. I picked a great book on differentiated classrooms, which I’ll review once I’ve given it a try. I mentioned to her that I had seen a math resources book the day before that I had come back to buy, but she couldn’t find it. Later that day, she did find it and gave it to me! It was a $100 book! I’m still pretty excited about that. 🙂 I’ll review that one in the near future, as well.

On the down side, Sook Dae has internet issues every year. Their system can’t handle the added traffic. Some years, onsite registration crashes. Most years, someone doesn’t get the access they need for their presentation. Something. This year, campus-wide internet was out for a period of time on Sunday, and there were “brown outs” (or the internet equivalent) on Saturday. It’s something that needs to be addressed, because it’s frustrating for everybody.

Otherwise, it was a great conference. (I got to see SLA rock star Stephen Krashen!) Great, that is, until the ABM at the end. Every year, the meeting devolves into two people being opposed on some minor (to me) issue, which they argue over at length. This year, it was about the elections. There were some campaigning methods employed that were outside the regs and some people thought it was fair play, or at least, not malicious, but others wanted the election to be invalidated.

There was a lot of quoting RRO and boys with rulers, but then a crazy and/ or drunk guy got up to give his two-cents in a sad, embarrassing manner. He ended by saying we should work harder to get along, which was a very valid point, but by that time, he had lost all credibility. I doubt any of the people he was aiming it at heard anything beyond, “Blah blah blah… drunken ramble… blah blah blah.” Hopefully, his parting shot will work its way into the back of some minds, though.

Either way, I’m out. My two years as national secretary have come to an end, and for the first time in eight or nine years, I do not have any title within the organization. It’s an odd feeling, but I’m looking forward to not having any deadlines looming over me for a while.