July 24

The DENsations compete in the #DENSI2012 DENmazing race

The DENsations Rock

We are

Kathy Sedlacek

Valerie Burton

Davina Turner and

Beth Burau


DENSI has yet another team building activity.  This one involves completing a series of challenges in hopes of having your team win the DENmazing Race.  I was able to join the race with this great group of educators who wanted to have fun and FINISH.  We did and We did. We had fun, ran a little, plotted how to succeed and laughed a lot.

We supported one another (they did not leave me as I heaved up the street feeling every above sea level breath I sucked in) and we cheered for our successes (we rocked the dance and bowling legs of the race, thank you… thank you very much.)

Thank you DENsations for helping to make my first DENSI memorable.


How many DEN Stars does it take to use a GPS to geocache during a scavenger hunt?

Uh… 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17 …. I lost count.  19, 20…

We even tried to use cellphones when that didn’t work.

What is this and what does it mean?

BUT we all worked together to finish that challenge and ‘Get ‘er done.’

July 23

My #DENSI2012 Monday

Yes Kathy, I know that this is more of a POSTER than an INFOGRAPHIC.

July 22

My dorm room

Here is where I will be staying for the next week, in a dorm room on the campus of Montana State University.  The dorm rooms are a little sparse but clean.










I have a bed, closet, desk and community bathroom down the hall, what else could a girl want in a dorm.

The door leading to this wonderful oasis was marked and labeled with my wanted poster.

The campus from my window early this morning.

Today we go to Yellowstone,  yay us.  If I survive the hike and the bears, I’ll check back in.

July 21

Day 1 #DENSI2012

Day one of DENSI2012 is over, it was great and I met some funny, dedicated teachers. After spilling baby oil in my computer, a 4 hour layover I arrived in Bozeman and then the real fun began.

For those of you new to the DENSI phenomenon, the Discovery Educators Network holds a week long Professional Development Summer Institute.  This year DENSI2012 takes place from July 21-26, 2012 at Montana State University in  Bozeman, MT.

They choose 125 STARs from all of their applications and I was one of the chosen few. Yay me!!! During our time we have the chance to meet other STARS from all over the country (and beyond) and spend a week meeting, collaborating and working with them.

What did I have to do to be accepted? Create a 60 second or less video that explains why I wanted to attend DENSI2012. Lodging and meals is covered by the Discovery Educator Network.  We have ‘missions’ and assignments to be created and shared during our time together.

Now back at the ranch….

We used these trading cards in a “Find Someone” activity created to have us get to talk to one another as we get them autographed.  We were asked to bring a souvenir from home and these were put in bags with DEN Star cards and randomly distributed.

After eating my first bison burger and getting a signature from Kathy Schrock, I talked to 7 other Stars as I got signatures.

It was a fun way to meet and greet.  There were many over-eager, over-achievers who got all of their cards signed (yes, I am in that crowd) who were reprimanded and reminded by Porter Palmer that the activity was to spend QUALITY time with other Stars and not to get as many signatures in an evening as possible.  oops

After dinner we watched a presentation from, Reed Timmer, a tornado chaser.  He has done lots of work with Discovery Education and lovvvvvves what he does. He showed us tons of footage of he and his crew filming tornadoes and risking life and limb.

After watching Reed, we had a group meeting with our small Learning Groups.  I think that we are going to have to ‘do, make, create, present’ something.

I am tired and it was a lonnng day.  A long day but one with new experiences and I know that tomorrow will be filled with even more.

July 10

#EdCamp Louisiana Certificates and badges


I wanted the EdCamp Louisiana Campers to have some swag to show off their participation so we have certificates for them and we have badges for them.
Whoo hoo!!! Gooooo EdCamp Louisiana!!!

Here are the badges to put on their sites.

July 1

My Blog is for Sharing

I am a Techie Teacher, Lifelong Learner, Mother of 2 and Facilitator of Many. 

 My name is Valerie Burton and I am online.  I am an English Teacher, Intel Trainer, Den Star & Techno Geek who is trying to improve education one tweet, blog and wiki at a time.  I infuse technology into my class as often as I can.  I use my Promethean board and projector regularly.  My assignments are posted on an assignment blog daily, on my whiteboard/chalkboard not so much.  I read books occasionally, I read tweets and blogs often.

I blog because I lovvvve to talk about education, my students, resources to use in my class and more educational stuff.  Blogging is a way of sharing ideas and resources.

I hope to share with you, my readers, thoughts, pictures, articles, and videos, that highlight the resources, influences and tools that lead to good teachers becoming more creative and better teachers.

If you are not interested in education, this probably isn’t the place for you.


My posts are categorized by their purpose and subject matter:

  • some of the things that I am doing, or want to do, or know can be done in any classroom. These posts will be labeled N my Class
  • some of the things that I am reading about and watching untangle in the world around me.  These posts will be labeled N my World. 
  • some of the things that I am thinking about that might have some relevance to you or someone that you know.  These posts will be labeled N my Head.
  • some of the things that I have created, either a writing piece (now that I am a member of the Greater New Orleans Writing Project) or some other creative piece that I have made.  These posts will be labeled N my Heart.