This past weekend I had the chance to go to Edcampcolumbus (#edcampcbus). It was awesome. I came to the Edcamp not knowing what to really expect, but sometimes you have to try new things to grow as a teacher, professional, and as a continual student. I can tell you this…I will continue to find edcamps and attend, and I will bring as many of my colleagues with me as I can. I learned so much from the discussions, and from the conversations I was having on twitter while the edcamp was going on.
I read a great blog about the Vibe Jacki Prati got while she was EdcampColumbus this past weekend. I have to agree with her. The vibe you get while at Edcamp so much different than at a traditional conference. It starts off with everyone having a voice in the topics that will be chosen. It is suggested that if you don’t like the session you are in, then move to another. The phrase I heard more than once was be in control of your learning.
There is a few things that made a huge impression on me.
1. The input of all participates to decide the sessions topics. When the big board was up, participants were encouraged to add topics sessions that were interested in discussing. I have to tell you it was hard to choose. There were a lot of good choices, but I loved the sessions I chose.
2. The sessions I sat in on and participated in were fast moving. The participants in these sessions would bounce off each other. There was no real facilitator for most of the sessions, because of that no one know where the road of the session will go until we are finished.
3. I learned about so many resources and books. I found that I really need to add to my library when it comes to education. Here is just a few:
When I left Edcamp on Saturday, I had so many emotions, but Jacki said it best when she wrote in her blog:
when you’re there, you’re inspired, empowered and engaged in a way that doesn’t compare to “normal” PD. It’s almost as if EdCamp is a mindset; a state of being in which you are free from “the system” as you know it and are able to envision education for what it’s really all about—STUDENTS! What a concept!
If there is an edcamp near you, I would encourage you to go. It is like no other professional development you ever get. Here is a list that may help you find one. I hope that I see you there.