I owe endless thanks to NIST International School
and Bangkok Hospital
for sponsoring the inaugural edcampBKK
, the first edcamp in Thailand! It was a dream come true to be in Bangkok at NIST’s beautiful campus and collaborate with the talented team of educators and administrators who facilitated the event. Chissa Duangnet
, Kim Beeman
, Ben Sheridan
, Jared Kuruzovich, Heida Prorate Doria
, James Dykman
, Michelle Marquez, and Boe Uarsakchai were all a joy to work with and made sure everything ran efficiently and seamlessly. It was such a pleasure to be able to rely on and trust everyone at the table! Bangkok Hospital sponsored awesome t-shirts and tote bags for participants sporting the gorgeous logo developed by the NIST team with a mango in lieu of the usual edcamp apple.
I’ve been a passionate champion and organizer of edcamps since I attended the first edcamp, edcampPhilly, in May of 2010. I was immediately inspired to launch edcampNYC just a few short months later in October of 2010. Since then, I’ve proudly inspired, coached, and peer-pressured more than a dozen additional edcamps around the world. What’s more powerful than teachers coming together to learn, network, and share with each other?! It brings me such joy to facilitate the creation of the session board — I love standing near it, inviting people to populate it with conversational topics that are pertinent to them, and suggesting that friends or strangers co-lead discussions with like goals rather than over-dilute the offerings with similar sounding sessions.
A couple stellar moments that I hope to remember:
- I got to organize this day with Chissa, one of my closest and oldest friends who I’ve know since she was 12 back when I was her sister’s first-year roommate at Bryn Mawr College. I also collaborated with Kim, a colleague from my Sacred Heart days, who has been Head Librarian at Shrewsbury International School in Bangkok for four years but is heading to Singapore next year to be at Tanglin Trust. We’re already planning edcampSingapore!
- Two of my favorite friends, educators, and ex-colleagues from The School at Columbia University were in attendance: Tabitha Johnson and Akio Iida! They were frequent participants at edcampNYC, launched edcampSeoul, and were such awesome champions at edcampBKK!
- At the end of the day, four ladies told me they were inspired to launch another edcamp in Thailand, and we immediately secured @edcampBangna for them! Here’s hoping it’s another success!
Here’s the awesome schedule crafted by attendees at @edcampBKK – each session title links to a Google Doc of notes (also viewable at http://tinyurl.com/edcampbkk2017):
Here is a tagboard of tweets from the day tagged with #edcampBKK:
One of my favorite tweets from a participant is pasted below:
@edcampIS is a traveling edcamp which follows the National Association of Independent Schools (NAIS) annual conference. This year’s location was sunny Baltimore, Maryland, and my fellow organizer, Shannon Montague (@MontySays), hosted #edcampIS at her wonderful school, The Bryn Mawr School. It was awesome to visit such a special learning environment which was apparently founded to be a feeder school for my alma mater, Bryn Mawr College. Thank you, for the history lesson, Shannon! Many thanks to the Edcamp Foundation for providing an Edcamp-in-a-Box which includes $200 towards the event. Due to Shannon’s uncanny knack for ordering from @PaneraBread, we had a magnificent spread for all of us that was within 47 cents of our total budget!
It was an intimate group that gathered in the Upper School Library this morning (“small and mighty” as tweeted by Jonathan E. Martin). Besides Shannon and me, our group consisted of Chris Shriver, Peter Gow, Jonathan Martin, Tammy Rice, Jen Cort, Amanda Macomber, Kristen Kennedy, Molly Smith, and Alex Northrup. As per any edcamp or unconference conversation, I always say that any and all who show up are the right people. We remained in a circle for much of the morning, enjoying a robust conversation which included: Sharing key takeaways from NAIS, thinking about school design, fostering a culture of innovation, educating students to be awesome grown-ups, getting out of our bubbles, embracing vulnerability, and sustaining social justice initiatives throughout the curriculum. Later in the morning, we divided into two groups for either a tour of Bryn Mawr School’s wonderfully impressive innovation spaces given by the incomparable Kristen Kennedy or a little more conversation and carbs in the library.
Here is a link to our GoogleDoc of shared notes that are also embedded below:
Below are some photos from the Upper School and Middle School spaces. Check out all the Harkness Tables that are all over the high school and also in 8th grade classrooms. I posted images of the Innovation Lab where Kristen Kennedy works her magic in a separate post….
I am so grateful that today’s 7th edcampNYC event was a great day for so many people! It could never have happened without my co-organizers, Ann Oro and Cathy Cheo-Isaacs, and the generosity of The Mandell School‘s administration and faculty (notably Peter Fletcher, Ben Chant, and Tiffany Della Vedova).
It was a big crowd that convened at Mandell‘s cafeteria with its lovely green plant-covered wall. I over-ordered from the Whole Foods UWS catering menu thanks to the generosity of our sponsors, BrainPop and PledgeCents. Whole Foods also contributed extra items to our cart so that attendees could properly carbo-load before the first session began.
It was awesome that Hadley Ferguson, Executive Director of the Edcamp Foundation, joined us along with two other founders of the first edcamp, edcampPhilly, and the Edcamp Foundation (Kevin Jarrett and Mike Ritzius)! I was also glad to see so many new and familiar faces including Lisa Nielsen who helped gather a large contingent of NYC DOE teachers and leaders as participants and facilitators. Also in attendance were organizers of upcoming edcamps, edcampBrooklyn and edcampStatenIsland!
The session board filled up with topics ranging from tweeting to coding, student voice to crowd-sourced funding, making connections to integrating makerspaces. The beauty of an unconference is that the schedule is BLANK until attendees gather and put up conversational topics that THEY CHOOSE to talk about. I stressed that whoever posted a session is responsible for facilitating a conversation rather than delivering a presentation. I also reminded people that the “rule of two feet” dictates that if you’re not being stimulated in a discussion, you are free to leave and move to another space. I joked that I always take it personally when people walk out on my sessions (#kiddingnotkidding), and I mentioned that following the #edcampnyc hashtag on Twitter is a terrific way to gather resources and ideas from other sessions without leaving whatever room you’re already in.
Many thanks to Godwyn Morris, owner of Dazzling Discoveries, for hosting attendees at her Upper West Side Makerspace afterwards. So many people enthusiastically walked an additional 9 blocks north to explore Scratch 3D, 3D design with Tinkercad, Makerbot printing, and constructing simple machines with DazzLinks (a new product from Dazzling Discoveries).
Here’s a link to the 2016 edcampNYC session board: https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/u/1/d/1BPJFosW5joMUqKDZ8xlso2hHyokF_QipL6YfEJzYcUk/pubhtml
Here’s a link to the Tagboard of #edcampNYC tweets: https://tagboard.com/edcampnyc/search
Click circle to donate!
Today is #GivingTuesday, and among other worthy places to donate funds, I am making a gift to Edcamp to commemorate their 5th anniversary and ensure many more years of worldwide edcamps and future innovations.
I am a huge fan of Edcamp and the power of educators to unite, network, and collaborate, and I’m proud to have been at the inaugural edcampPhilly back in May of 2010. I went, brought colleagues, ate many doughnuts, met online connections face-to-face, made new friends, presented, attended sessions, tweeted, blogged, and was inspired to launch one of the first spin-offs, edcampNYC. Since then, I’ve organized (and peer-pressured) other edcamps to get off the ground, both domestically and internationally. What’s better than bringing teachers together to share best practices, learn from each other, and build community?!
The following is an excerpt from a recent blog post from Hadley Ferguson, Executive Director of the Edcamp Foundation.
(Her full post is here: http://www.edcamp.org/blog-post/edcamp5challenge)
What an amazing 5 years it has been, since the first Edcamp! It is hard to imagine a world without Edcamps to attend! Let’s show the world just how wide the influence has been.
We are kicking off a campaign for #GivingTuesday, which is the Tuesday after Thanksgiving! December, 1st! It follows Black Friday and Cyber Monday and is a time to pause and give back. We want to have everyone who has ever been to an Edcamp to donate $5, that’s all, to show the world how many educators have been touched by Edcamp.
Below are some of my photos from that first edcampPhilly!