If there is one thing that Garth and I have learned it is that the best part of any conference is often those side conversations, long lunches and dinners that end at 2am with great friends. This is where we talk in real terms, define what has worked with our kids and philosophize about the current administrative structure helping and hindering our endeavors. It is where many of us often say, "I wish there was a presentation on....". EdCamps attack this issue head-on. Several years back a group of us in northeast Ohio began to host random #CraftEDU meetings at craft breweries around our homes, then around the state and now they tend to happen country-wide. These small, casual meetings were great, but they were not wide spread.
Two years ago, a rather impressive individual named John Schinker brought EdCamp to Cleveland. John has successfully orchestrated two EdCamps. This year, he passed the reigns to me and my NORT2H family. EdCamp is an un-conference, it has no set speakers, no keynote and no cost. In Cleveland, we even buy you lunch and give you gifts for coming!
EdCamp's schedule is designed by the participants as the day progresses. You are not allowed to direct instruct. We have people facilitate conversations in a circled group of chairs. Conversation can be about technology, textbooks or a myriad of other topics, but at its hart EdCamp is about education!
May 17, 2014 will be the next #edcampCLE event. Independence Local Schools is hosting our event and I hope it is the type of conference where people leave with two things:
1. At least 3 new people in their PLC, whether that is email, phone numbers or Twitter
2. More questions than answers. The conversations you slip into should stir your creativity as a teacher.
...If you are anywhere in Ohio and can make it out, that would be really, really cool We have 98 registered for the event. Did I mention we buy you lunch, everyone leaves with a custom pint glass or custom coffee mug and we have some great donated items to give away (blue tooth speakers, Camtasia software, Instagrok accounts, maybe even some Chromebooks!).
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