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SIT Conference showcases tech to students

Published: Tuesday, Dec. 25, 2012 5:30 a.m. CDT

DeKALB – Students in third-grade through senior year of high school can start registering for the annual Students Involved with Technology Conference, which will be in February.

For $25, students will be able to view presentations on 3D technology, laser engraving, LEGO robotics, website designs and video game applications said Denise Flemming, the site coordinator. The conference is unique in that students present to attendees.

“It is set up to be a professional conference, but for kids,” Flemming said.

The SIT Conference is a statewide student technology conference sponsored by the Bloomington-Normal Education Alliance, Illinois State Board of Education and State Farm Insurance. DeKalb High School is one of six sites hosting a SIT Conference on Feb. 23. This will be the fifth year DeKalb has served as a site for the conference.

As the teacher on special assignment for technology in District 428, Flemming said she helps integrate technology into the classroom. The conference is a chance for students to see and use technology not present in most schools, she said.

“(The students) learn and ask questions. They’re able to explore (topics) they are interested in,” Flemming said. “A lot of the students return as presenters the following year.”

Students have to register by Jan. 28; there is no on-site registration. Students can register as either presenters or attendees; there is no difference in price. Flemming said organizers are always in need of student presenters.

Students need their parents’ or guardians’ permission to attend the conference, but parents do not have to attend. Adult volunteers run the conference behind the scenes, said Brian Tobin, the district’s chief technology officer.

Tobin said students who are presenting are able to come to the high school to test run their presentations so they can find any gaps in it.

Throughout the conference, students can earn SIT bucks, Flemming said, which are raffle tickets that can be redeemed for prizes. Flemming said Northern Illinois University has donated three Kindle Fire mini-tablets to be raffled off.

Flemming said presenters are automatically awarded five SIT bucks, while other students can win them by demonstrating good behavior at the conference.

If you go

What: Students Involved with Technology Conference

When: The event starts at 8:30 a.m. Feb. 23. Students must register by Jan. 28.

Where: DeKalb High School, 501 W. Dresser Road, DeKalb

Who can register: Students between third grade and high school seniors. The cost is $25.

For more information: Visit www.sitconference.org

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