Informal and Powerful Learning at EdCamp Round Rock ISD

This post was written by Executive Director of Teaching & Learning, Ryan Smith. Learn more about him at his blog and connect with Ryan by following him on Twitter.

The power of the participant-driven learning model came clear recently at EdCamp Round Rock when I looked around the room at teachers from five different public school districts, a private school network, and even a future teacher still in college choosing to spend their Saturday morning together. That room contained classroom teachers from early elementary to high school. There were librarians, Instructional technology specialists, a few of us administrators, and even a school board member. The conversations revolved around personalized learning, tools to enhance Instruction, better ways to communicate with parents, etc.

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Click the Image Above to Access Shared Session Notes

I venture though that even more powerful connections and conversations took place between sessions, during breakfast, or during the share-out sessions at the end. Click here to check out the tweets using our #EdCampRRock. I tweeted the below question after the event for folks to share some highlights:

The power of getting diverse sets of voices and ideas in a room is never more clear than when we keep it informal. I was at the TASA MidWinter conference last week. Thousands of Texas school district administrators getting together to listen to presentations and get pitched to by vendors. The most valuable hour I had at the conference was sitting at a corner table with my compadres from Liberty Hill, Hutto, and Manor ISDs. We could do that at any time, but for some reason, we need a state-wide conference to make it happen. We need to do better.

EdCamps are an incredible start to providing the space for these authentic conversations. They are free to attend, and vendors can donate door prizes, but not attend in person. Stay tuned for more EdCamp opportunities here in Round Rock ISD and throughout the state of Texas.

Don’t forget to check out the shared notes from this past weekend’s event!

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