First, I would like to thank the organizers at Edcamp Vancouver, John Oliver Secondary and their student volunteers for the day. I would also like to thank all the participants who through conversations (backchannel included) for challenging my thinking and learning.
The EdCamp model is truly empowering. Having choice in your learning, presenters not acting as experts, but more as facilitators of discussion allowed for a more collaborative style of learning. Is Edcamp for everyone? I’m not sure. There was mention that the model was tried as a push from District Office with minimal success. Why?
As educators, we are learners just like out students. As educators we know that we need to put our kids on the edge of improvement, a little discomfort is needed to challenge and push them, but if the challenge is to big and they are pushed at a level beyond their comfort the learning will be lost.
Some educators are more progressive than others. For those that are continually reflecting on their practice, collaborate and always have themselves on the edge of improvement Edcamp is a great model – it totally fits their style of learning. For those, that teach curriculum and not kids and prefer to keep their door closed would be overwhelmed by Edcamp. It is too much too soon.
For the Edcamp model to become systemic, I think it needs to continue to grow through connected educators. It needs to be a grassroots movement that spreads through word of mouth and progressive learning. Malcolm Gladwell is oft quoted, but his seminal work in the Tipping Point can act as a guide. The group of educators at Edcamp Vancouver (and other Edcamps globally) were highly connected, provincially and beyond due to the high quality of their work and their use of Social Media. It is these connections that we can influence others and bring them willingly on board. At some point, through hard work and patience, the system will tip and the Edcamp model of Pro D will become the accepted model of learning.
Thanks to all the Edcampers around the world for continuing the good work.