CUE and You: The 2016 National Conference

Copy of Logo 2016It’s time to prepare yourself for one of the largest and most inspiring educational technology events in the nation. Welcome to the CUE 2016 National Conference in beautiful Palm Springs, CA. This year’s SOLD OUT event promises to outdo previous conferences and includes many new features targeting folks new to CUE as well as seasoned regulars.

In addition to these new features, some old favorites have expanded or have had the event location moved. Read on to discover how you can make the best use of your time at #cue16.

CUE15Day2_ 5202Tips and tricks to get ready for the conference

What To Bring

Plan to pack items like power supplies, including extra batteries, water, and food for each day. Dress for comfort and don’t forget some sunscreen and/or a hat. Lines at popular food outlets can be long, so many attendees choose to pack a lunch each day.


Each attendee will receive a printed CUE program upon check-in, but you should invest a few minutes of your time interacting with the online guide found at 2016.cue.org. Sign-up for an account if you don’t have one and browse session and event information. Create a personalized schedule and see what your friends and colleagues are interested in. This is also where you can fill out an evaluation of sessions that you attend which helps CUE provide better experiences for future events.

Arrive Early For Sessions

It’s a good idea to arrive early for sessions you are interested in. Check the online schedule and note the number of people who have shown interest in attending. Some sessions fill up quickly and the featured speakers and keynotes may have pre-talk surprises planned.


You should have already received your check-in credentials in an email sent to the user account you used to register for the event. It contains a badge pickup barcode that can quickly be scanned at check-in. Have the barcode ready on your phone or tablet and registration will be a breeze. Registration is open from 4:30 pm to 8 pm on Wednesday and then beginning at 7 am on Thursday and Friday, and 7:30 am on Saturday, in the Convention Center Lobby

First-Timer’s Orientation

If this is your first time at the CUE 2016 National Conference, consider attending this orientation on Thursday from 7:30 – 8:15 am in Primrose B at the convention center.

Getting Around

Screen Shot 2016-03-13 at 12.05.08 PMThe majority of events are within a comfortable walking distance from the convention center, however there may be times when the free shuttle service comes in handy. There are six venues this year so saving your energy for learning by using the shuttles is a good idea. Shuttles are scheduled to run between the major hotels and the convention center every 15 minutes. Shuttles will service the following hotels: Hilton Hotel, Hyatt Hotel,​ Saguaro Hotel, Ace Hotel, Courtyard by Marriott​, Hard Rock Hotel​ and Riviera​ ​Hotel. If your hotel is not listed, make your way to any of these to catch the shuttle.

Exhibit Hall

With 200 vendors on hand displaying the latest and greatest technologies for classrooms this is a great place to pick up information and swag to take back to your classroom. Many offer free giveaways like t-shirts and samples and are looking for educators interested in testing-driving their products.


Follow CUE and the hashtag #cue16 to connect and collaborative with fellow attendees through the event backchannel. You’ll get tips for upcoming sessions, recommendations for dining options, and inspiring quotes and interesting observations covering every angle. Join the conversation!


Please check out Lucy Gray’s most recent CUE blog post about badging and social media at the CUE 2016 National Conference. Find out what’s going on with the mysterious Golden Badge. See how you can earn badges. And if you’re not sure why you’d want to earn badges you want to read Cate Tolnai’s post. The CUE Blog- We’ve got you covered.

photo credit- Silva

photo credit- Silva

Featured Events

CUE UnconNew location, Mesquite D, Palm Springs Convention Center (PSCC)

Unplug from the main conference and connect with others looking for an informal setting to hold a conversation about topics of interest to you. Volunteer educators will be staffing this room and help attendees build their own sessions in self-directed groups. Open beginning at 4:30 pm on Wednesday, and then on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

CUE STEAMpunk PlaygroundMesquite GH, PSCC

Are you interested in jumpstarting a STEAM program at your school, but don’t know where to begin? Top STEAM teachers from throughout the state will guide you through a series of hands-on, maker inspired projects including robots, drones, Minecraft, 3D printing and programming. Sessions will run Thursday, Friday and Saturday.

Student-Powered ShowcaseRenaissance Hotel, Ballroom Foyer

Saturday brings this much loved and not to be missed student event to the CUE 2016 National Conference. You’ll be inspired by these student generated and technology integrated projects reflecting innovative work in STEAM and the Maker space. This event runs from 10:00 am to 12 noon on Saturday.

Minecraft PlaygroundHyatt Hotel, Grand Rooms

Come out to the Hyatt Hotel to experience the Minecraft Playground, Thursday and Friday only – 10:00 – 11:00 am and 12:30 – 4:30 pm. There will be an open lab to explore Minecraft and its applications in education. This casual event is designed for folks new to Minecraft as well as those with experience. There will be an opportunity to play and learn more about MinecraftEdu, meet other Minecraft enthusiasts, and have an opportunity to apply for a closed beta of the new Minecraft:Education Edition.

Can’t wait to see you at the CUE 2016 National Conference. Let the learning begin.

***Please note, if you haven’t already registered our event is SOLD OUT! Thank you for your interest and keep an eye out for CUE 2016 Fall Conference registration to open.***

John Miller

John Miller is a middle school history teacher and Minecraft curriculum developer in southern Monterey County. He is also a Google Innovator and CUE Lead Learner with over 20 years classroom experience. John is the president of San Luis Obispo CUE and is a contributor to the book “An Educator’s Guide to Using Minecraft in the Classroom” (2014) and is co-author of “Unofficial Minecraft Labs for Kids” (2016).

About author View all posts

John Miller

OnCUE Connect

Sign up and connect to CUE members, resources, and more at OnCUE -- delivered to your inbox each day!