Thursday, May 1, 2014

Choose Your Own Adventure #EdCampTC

You remember those books, don't you? Choose your own adventure? So great. Was I the only strange kid that immediately tried to choose the path that resulted in the most horrible things happening?

Yeah, I might be.

Anyhow, the selling point of the "choose your own adventure" genre was the ability to have control over outcomes. To tap into your own interests and give you as many pathways as possible. Sometimes the outcomes were desirable, sometimes not so much, but ultimately the choice in process outweighed the outcome anyhow. The process was user-driven.

The same appeal applies to EdCamps. If you've never been to an EdCamp or heard of them before, the basic premise is that the entire conference is user-driven. The content, structure and outcomes are all determined by the participants. Everyone is simultaneously an expert and a learner.

Here is a short video shared by Byron Public School's Jen Hegna from their in-district #EdCamp. It does a nice job of summing up how EdCamps generally work.

I bring all this up because this past weekend I had the privilege of attending #EdCampTC (Ed Camp Twin Cities). In the past, I've also attending #EdCampMSP and #EdCampMN -- All highly recommended events. Using what you learned in the above video, take a look at the schedule that was generated this weekend for #EdCampTC: SO MANY GOOD SESSIONS. So much learning driven by the interests of people in the crowd.

Take a moment. Think about the possibilities here. The possibilities when the people in the room dictate the direction of the day.

The possibilities for me are ones that I hold a high appreciation for: authentic collaboration, relevancy, inspiration, connections, and a whole lot more.

I'm sure many who read this blog are already familiar with EdCamps. This post isn't necessarily for you. It's for anyone who might come across this post who has never attended one. If you fall into that category, I highly recommend you seek one out in your area. You'll leave feeling invigorated, you'll likely make connections with people you'll stay connected with, and if nothing else, you'll definitely get your voice heard.

Find a list of upcoming EdCamps here

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