Why is it such a successful professional development model?
How will the momentum be maintained?
Will educamps become the conference of the future - by the people, for the people?
How can we share the "Twitter Magic" with those who just don't get it?
I entered a room of people at a school 1,604 km away. I had met 3 staff from the school the night before and have tweeted with four people over the past year. I felt so welcome, at home, and a part of the educamp. Twitter really does break down barriers and make you connect instantly.
The smackdown is an amazing way to start the conference. It is timed - 2 minute slots. You get to introduce yourself, share a passion, skill or learning opportunity. Through the smackdown you get to meet everyone and out of this a number of conversation starters or discussion groups arise. Groups then disperse to converse. This is the greatest time - there are no timelines, guidelines, rules or instructions. Everyone becomes involved.
The power of being in a room of like-minded educators is so stimulating. It is all about connecting, sharing, and collaborating. The day flew by and I was really reluctant to leave the premises to get lunch. After a quick trip out to a local cafe - the conversations resumed and the learning continued.
I wonder if we should have an option of ordering food in for #educampdunners??? Although it is nice to get out - it would be nice to have the option of staying together and dining on site.
All too soon the day was over and I have new learning, new friends, new respect for the power of professional conversation and new enthusiasm for the learning and education in New Zealand. We really are a nation rich in sharing!!!