This week we will be bringing you daily updates from the National Title I Conference in Tampa, Florida. Here is the entry for day one, Monday, January 31.

Educational leaders from all across the county gathered in Tampa, Florida this morning for the start of the 2011 National Title I Conference, and I think the majority of attendees—including myself—are staying at the Embassy Suites downtown. The jam-packed workout room and long, staggering breakfast lines were evidence of just how many people are here for the conference. Waiting in a line for breakfast may be nothing new, but having to wait in line to use the treadmill at a hotel workout room was definitely a first for me!

But the lines didn’t end there. Attendees lined up at the Imagine Learning booth to play the interactive “Free the Aliens” game for a chance to win an iPod and the glory of being the highest scorer. It brought out the competitive side in all of us as we experienced just one of the engaging activities of Imagine Learning English. Herb Monroe, from Henrico County in Virginia, was just one of many attendees who competed for the top spot. After playing the game he said, “I’ve got to come back.” He was determined to give it another shot and get the highest score. He went on to say, “It’s fun and colorful. The kids would love this!”

Read the day two recap here.

– Emily Bybee is an area partnership manager for Imagine Learning