I was so excited to read this morning that the EdCamp Foundation got $2 million from the Gates Foundation to do their work. A little over 5 years ago, I happened to see an announcement about this unconference happening in Philly to bring teachers together to do their own professional development. I was about to start my first K-12 teaching job. With almost 20 years of college teaching under my belt, you’d think I wouldn’t need to learn anything else, but there’s always more to learn!! So I showed up on a Saturday, and kind of got my mind blown.
I’d been to an unconference before, but it was Northern Voice, a conference that covered a lot of different topics, generally surrounding social media. A small portion had to do with education. To have an entire conference devoted to becoming a better teacher, and to learn from other teachers, was a godsend. I’ve been to every EdCamp Philly ever since, and joined the planning committee 2 years ago.
The people who planned the original conference, some of whom are still part of the planning committee are people I had long admired via social media. The current planning committee and the people who show up are generally amazing. This year, I was especially proud to have several of my own colleagues there, all of whom told me they got a lot out of the day.
I can’t wait to see where the movement goes. I think it’s done a lot for invigorating teachers around the world. Whenever there’s an EdCamp going on, my Twitter stream blows up and I see so many interesting thoughts floating by. It’s great to see so much engagement from teachers. If you’ve never been to an EdCamp, you really should go. Find one here. And get ready for some truly engaging PD.