The Edcamp Foundation has partnered with Remind again this year to bring #EdcampGift 2015. This is a great way to engage with fellow Edcampers and share stories. Oh, did I mention that one person will also be selected each day to donate $100 to their favorite Edcamp?!
Join the conversation by using the #EdcampGift hashtag on Twitter and Instagram!
#EdcampKC this past Saturday was my 7th Edcamp.
It is, by far, my favorite form of professional development. The grassroots effort behind the planning, the delivery, the sessions, the conversations, the learning…it’s all real. When 300 educators come together on a Saturday, to improve what they do, it’s real.
Edcamps aren’t pretentious. There are no presentations to show off. There are healthy debates. There are moments of real honesty.
Technology may or may not play a part of the day. And that is ok. Heather Braum (@hbraum) led a session for teacher librarians and worried that because it didn’t involve tech, it might not have a mass appeal. The wifi crashed and we weren’t able to share out our learning as much as we hoped. But the conversations and learning continued…
Maybe the simplicity of the day helped us focus on what we all needed in that moment. It did for me. I reconnected with friends. I took in the beauty of the Nelson-Atkins. I laughed. I acted like a dork (no surprise). I was rejuvenated and challenged.
I learned. At an Edcamp.
What more can I say about EdCampOmaha that hasn’t already been said? There were over 100 educators from nearby and across the country who came to take part in this event. Not only were they ready to learn, they were ready to propose a session topic and lead a conversation with others. It took passion, a desire to improve the learning of our students, and courage.
Passion is a huge factor in the individuals who participated in EdCampOmaha, but more than anything, I see courage. Registering and actually attending an EdCamp requires one to step out of their comfort zone, particularly if they have grown accustomed to school district PD, because it is not your average conference. Joining conversations demands that one express their opinions, beliefs, or experiences with a wide audience because talking drives action. Leading a session indicates the desire to start a discussion about a given topic to reflect upon personal experiences and compel others to share their expertise, opinions, or questions. Creating and utilizing a Twitter account during a conference such as EdCamp takes risk to slowly begin to understand the comprehensive nature of a Personal Learning Network. The realization that it takes an incredible amount of humility to understand that failure in front of peers and students (yes, students!) is powerful and shows our own humanness.
We are all passionate and devoted educators, but we are also courageous. Try something new. Sign up for an EdCamp near you. Share what you do with others. Show fellow teachers what your students can do.
Be courageous. Ser valiente.