I clearly remember when I sent my first e-mail. When I first searched the web for resources that would help me become a better teacher. As a college student, I recall telling my parents that I couldn’t come home for the summer unless they got “The Internet.” I remember that extremely annoying sound when no connections were available (using dial-up, of course)! Back then, teachers learned and planned differently. My 19 year old self couldn’t begin to fathom how teachers would be able to learn and plan in 2016.
There was an occasional listserv or website you could learn from, but that was it. The majority of my professional learning came either from those I interacted with on a daily basis or the books I read. And, oh there were books! Mosaic of Thought by Ellin Keene & Susan Zimmerman; Reading with Meaning by Debbie Miller; The Art of Teaching Writing by Lucy Calkins. I soaked up their ideas like a sponge, and over time I even met all of these authors in person and got to see their teaching demonstrations (talk about magic!) through conventional conferences. Yet they all seemed very distant… these experts who wrote these books that were so influential in my teaching.
The type of learning that I just described is in stark contrast to #TheEdCollabGathering that Chris Lehman conceptualized and brought to life yesterday. He assembled a rockstar line-up of educators/ authors/speakers who presented live sessions that teachers could tune in to or watch on-demand from the archives. These educators were able to INTERACT with the audience through Twitter, which is something that my young teaching self would never have thought possible.
I’ll share my learning from #TheEdCollabGathering in my next post. For now, I’ll leave you with a few of my favorite books (or upcoming books that I just KNOW will become my favorite books) from the educators who presented yesterday.
No longer are these eduSTARS regarded as all-knowing experts who must live on another planet. They are real people, like you and like me, who are in our schools, in our classrooms, teaching right alongside us, answering our questions, sharing our examples, favoriting our Tweets, reading our blogs, learning together.
The book is in your court…
This post is linked to DigiLit Sunday here . Thank you to Margaret Simon for providing this forum to celebrate Digital Literacy and reflections on #TheEdCollabGathering.