I’m proud to be an alumna of the Communication, Media, and Learning Technologies Design Program at Teachers College, Columbia University where I earned my MA (2001) and EdM (2016) in Instructional Technology and New Media. (The next step would be a Doctorate, but unless I get an honorary one like Bono, I’m not sure I have the willpower to do so…)
Professor Chang, my patient and helpful thesis advisor, invited me to speak with her core seminar students tonight about my “experience and expertise in implementing and learning with technology in the classroom.” I prepared the slides above to lightly outline and illustrate why I think curating a Personalized (or Professional) Learning Network is super valuable. I also included suggestions for how to locate and connect with people synchronously and asynchronously, online and offline, personally and professionally. For inspiration about what to talk about, I turned to the abstract for my EdM paper which is pasted below:
This paper considers that investing time in growing a Personalized Learning Network (PLN) by interacting with other professionals in the field synchronously and asynchronously, online and offline, socially and professionally will lead to the ultimate reward of being a more engaged, informed, and connected educator in the 21st Century. This inevitably will enable access to people and information that will further enrich the educator and their community. There are distinct advantages to building and leveraging a PLN to learn, share, network, and collaborate as a career teacher both online and offline. Additionally, maintaining a personal portfolio is a valuable resource towards professional growth and building your network as it helps educators engage in a metacognitive study of their own teaching and learning, legitimize their online presence, and expand their PLN. Much research points towards the value of growing a PLN and digital portfolio curation and the role these play in a 21st Century educator’s practice.
Here is the description of the workshop from the Teach21 website:
Curation is a 21st Century skill, so let’s show how to gather archival evidence of your professional endeavors and classroom projects in a digital portfolio. You’ll learn tips to get started: What to gather? Where to put it? How much will this cost? How to organize it? What settings to use? How to link or embed artifacts? How to connect with others? This will be a half-day workshop from 12:30 – 3:00.
Here are my slides for the workshop:
An empty session board at the start of any edcamp is full of promise. On Saturday, I helped organize another edcampnyc event (our 7th!), and like all other edcamps, it was a day of participant-driven learning and sharing. Attendees arrived and posted conversational strands onto the empty session board, and people who posted to the board were responsible for facilitating a conversation rather than presenting or lecturing.
It takes a village, and edcampnyc couldn’t have happened without generous help from the following angels: The NYEdTech Meetup Group for again sponsoring a wonderful breakfast, Ian Klapper and Alex Ragone of City and Country School for hosting and supporting the event at their beautiful school, Katy Gartside and Ann Oro for their planning and organizing prowess!
Hadley Ferguson is the newly appointed Executive Director of the Edcamp Foundation. Hadley discussed her new role via #SatChat live from @edcampNJ. (#SatChat is a weekly Twitter chat about education and administration which takes place on Saturday mornings.) Hadley then hopped a train and joined us at edcampNYC! Kim Sivick was also in attendance at edcampNYC. Hadley and Kim (and an amazing group of inspiring and innovative educators) organized the first edcamp in Philadelphia (@edcampPhilly) in May of 2010 and later founded the Edcamp Foundation to support and grow the Edcamp movement. This group of awesome people altered the traditional model of Professional Development, empowered teachers around the world, begat communities of educators sharing and learning together, and changed my life.
Besides hanging with Hadley and Kim, it was gratifying to greet many familiar faces, many new faces, and even folks who had never been to an edcamp before. It was also awesome to follow the tweets generated during the day and gather/promote these from the @edcampnyc account. There were some great topics offered, and luckily many sessions had notetakers or someone who started a shared GoogleDoc. See our November 2014 session board with links to any notes below:
I’ve had a few people ask me for advice on how to organize an edcamp. Here are some bare essentials:
- Attend an edcamp!
- Reserve a Gmail account with email@example.com (where *** is your theme or geographic location).
- Use the Google Drive associated with firstname.lastname@example.org to create a digital spreadsheet for your event’s schedule (this can be linked and embedded on your event’s website).
- Use this Gmail address to reserve edcamp*** on Twitter.
- Reserve edcamp*** on a blogging platform (like WordPress or Blogger) to communicate details about the event. Buy the edcamp***.org, edcamp***.net, edcamp***.com, or edcamp***.info domain name if you like.
- Add your event’s info to the official edcamp wiki.
- Find a space to host your event, preferably a school with a robust Wifi network, easy to locate rooms and bathrooms, projectors or screens in classrooms, a large common area for announcements and networking, space for a physical paper schedule, space for breakfast set up, and hopefully one who will foot the insurance bill.
- Locate a breakfast sponsor.
- See what help the Edcamp Foundation can provide in terms of sponsor and insurance.
- Set up a ticketing page using Ticketleap or Eventbrite or Meetup to handle registration.
- Promote! Use Twitter (get other edcamps to tweet about your event), your PLN, Google+, Facebook, call schools directly, contact graduate schools of education…