ASCD conference attendees wondering how their experience compares to the gatherings of yore can peruse “How To Attend a Conference (— The ASCD Tenth Annual Conference, That Is!)” (PDF) from the February 1955 issue of Educational Leadership (EL). Unsurprisingly, EL editor and ASCD Executive Secretary George W. Denemark recommends you preregister promptly (by mail).
Read the article: How To Attend a Conference (—The ASCD Tenth Annual Conference, That Is!) (PDF)
Once you’ve arrived in Chicago, site of the ’55 conference, “with a suitcase, a wool muffler, overshoes, and, of course, your registration receipt for the conference”, Denemark implores you to visit the conference exhibit hall and review the many types of sessions available. He recalls the remarks by 1954 General Session speaker Alice Keliher—remembered in her New York Times obituary as the “grandmother of day care”—as having moved one attendee to describe the experience as “having been to an educational church.” And he speaks with great passion about the smaller, more focused discussion groups organized around particular topics of interest.
In truth, although technology has advanced greatly and the conference has expanded its scope, the experience at its core does not seem radically different. The activities and sessions revolve around familiar themes of making and strengthening personal connections and exchanging powerful ideas and information—and will continue to do so March 16–18, 2013, when the 68th Annual Conference and Exhibit Show returns to Chicago.