Todays episode of the TeacherCast University Podcast features some great ways for educators to enhance their skills in the classroom. Jeff sits down to discuss three of the most popular professional development “unconferences”, Edcamp, TeachMeet and Padcamp. This show also includes a great session from Ask ITT with our friend Jeff Herb.
Educational Professional Development “Unconferences”
The Edcamp Revolution began two years ago in the City of Brotherly Love. While attending a Barcamp one day, a group of educators came together to lay the groundwork to what has become a professional development revolution. Since the first Edcamp in 2010, this unconference style, participant driven teacher focused professional development day has spread not only across the nation but across the world. Edcamps are now found in just about every hemisphere of the globe and being attended by thousands of educators each weekend. If you haven’t attended an Edcamp yet… what are you waiting for?
For more information, please visit the Edcamp Foundation website to learn where you can attend an Edcamp in your area.
TeachMeet is an unconference similar to Edcamp. The difference is in the structure of the day. Traditionally, TeachMeets run shorter sessions than other unconferences. Ranging from two to twenty minutes per session, TeachMeets grew out of a 2005 meeting in Scotland where a group of educators wanted to come together and share the resources they found most important to them. Since then TeachMeet has become a staple of Professional Development in the USA.
Got an iPad? Want to learn how to teach with it? Then you need to go to Padcamp!
Padcamp is an unconference that was inspired by the Edcamp movement. Educators can come to Padcamp and learn how to be dynamic and creative instructors using their tablets. Just like other unconferences, it is expected that participants take control of their own learning. Padcamps are extremely popular due to the over abundance of resources that educators have on the iPad and other tablet devices. It doesn’t matter if you are an iPad developer or just interested in finding out how to use the devices your students are bringing to school with them, Padcamp is one of the best places to find out about the latest in mobile technology.
Can’t find an unconference near you?
If you are interested in expanding your Personal Learning Networks and can’t find an Edcamp, TeachMeet, or Padcamp in your area there are several great resources that teachers can turn to to bring professional development to their classrooms and living rooms.
Here are some examples of how to update your own personal elearning:
- Twitter as a professional development tool
- Educators Virtual Professional Development
- 10 Tips for Effective Professional Development