I don't know about you, but I feel so refreshed when I have a chance to do professional stuff outside my building. Don't get me wrong - in my school we all learn from each other, but at times, it seems forced because we are all spinning our wheels thinking of things we should be doing instead of meeting and "planning". When I am out of the building attending a conference or at a meeting with other professionals in my field - there is something about that environment that just gives me a boost, like I feel valued.
This weekend I had the opportunity to sit in a room with 9 other professionals - teachers and professors - from around the nation to choose this years best Social Studies books. I serve on a 3 year committee, this is year 2, and although I don't really "know" the people that serve with me - it is just so refreshing to sit and talk, compare stories, share ideas with like minded people - I just love it.
When I get to go lead workshops I feel the same way. I love collaborating with other people in other places and comparing notes. I sometimes get great inspiration from hearing how other teachers do things and engage their students. Attending conferences these days with budget cuts is a luxury - but I love doing that too. I always feel so great coming home from a professional experience like this.
How do you view attending conferences and meetings with others? Do you feel "refreshed" or do you leave feeling "overwhelmed" like you have to go and do all the things you learned about (been there too!)