Monday, October 12, 2015

Resource Roundup! Five Key Takeaways From #EdCampTriValley

I was more than a little bit excited to attend my very first #edcamp on Saturday, October 10th. #EdCampTriValley was a fantastic opportunity for me and a few of my amazing MDUSD colleagues, Jen Gabor (@Jen_Gabor), Amanda Young (@ajyoung53), Tracey Steele (@traysteele), Chrissie Cattalini (@TeacherCatt), Wendy Townlin (@wendytownlin) and Craig Yen (@CraigYen). We walked away with a ton of new ideas to try and made some inspiring connections with other educators. The #edcamp master himself, Craig Yen, kindly storified the event for us 
all here.

1. Edcamps are just plain cool. The day started with a fabulous welcome from Traci Bonde (@tr_bo) and Lisa Highfill (@lhighfill). We socialized for a bit then got down to business writing down the topics we wanted to focus on for the day. The amazing #edcamptrivalley team made a schedule of the most popular sessions. Each session has a link to the notes taken by participants which you can check out here, If you are an #edcamp junkie (like I will soon be) or if you are brand new to the event and want to check it out, you can visit to find one near you!  

2. To say that I LOVE hyperdocs would be an extreme understatement. Hyperdocs are a game changer for us at Sun Terrace Elementary and 95% of the reason for attending this particular #edcamp was to meet the Hyperdoc queens themselves Lisa Highfill, Kelly Hilton (@KellyiHilton) and Sarah Landis (@SarahLandis). So when asked to write down what we wanted to focus on I wrote hyperdocs down in very large letters! It was a fantastic session where we got a chance to brainstorm, share and create with Kelly Hilton (check out our session notes). (Lisa Highfill also popped in for a bit and my #edcamp dreams came true!) We took this template made originally by Sarah Landis and added links and ideas to each portion to make it even easier to create a hyperdoc of your own! 
For more about HyperDocs watch this Google Edu On Air session or this EdWeb Webinar! (You have to login to view the webinar but it’s worth it!) Visit and @tsgivets for even more ideas!

3. Blogging is an incredible way to become a connected educator and get our students connected too! I am a total newbie so my second session choice was all about blogging. It was a fantastic opportunity and I got a chance to meet some other awesome educators who are working on implementing blogging with their classes. We discussed getting our classes involved in the Not Perfect Hat Club Blog It Challenge through different blogging platforms such as @blogger, @kidblogdotorg, and a new one to many called @mywriteabout. During the session I had to opportunity to connect with Candace Whites (@CandaceWhites) a member of our #TOSAChat community who was motivated by #edcamptrivalley to write an awesome blog post after the event! That's the power of #edcamp! Check out Candace's blog post and our session notes for even more resources!
The #NPHCBlogIt challenge is "a global blogging challenge for students between the ages of 6 and 12 and their teachers. We will be reading and blogging about The Not Perfect Hat Club, a book about the importance of finding and celebrating each child’s unique 

4. The day was fabulous but the best part for me was meeting my Twitter PLN face to face and making new connections! In addition to meeting Candace I had the opportunity to connect with Josh Harris (@edtechspec), Scott Padway (@ScottPadway), and of course Lisa Highfill, Kelly Hilton and Traci Bonde. Twitter enhanced the already great event because we were able to see what was going on in the other session through the hashtag #edcamptrivalley. Participating in a twitter chat is a great way to connect with other educators. A shout out to a few fantastic twitter chats happened throughout the day. The Official Education Twitter Chat list has has TONS of chats for educators to participate in. Below are a few mentioned at #edcamptrivalley  (and a few others I love) that you can jump into and build your twitter PLN!

5. After the sessions we all came back together to share awesome tips, tricks and resources. One resource that stood out was OneTab, an incredibly helpful chrome extension shared by Jen Gabor (@Jen_Gabor) and echoed by Andrew Knauft (@aknauft). OneTab converts all of your open tabs into a list then makes it easy to reopen one or all of the tabs or share them as a website or a QR Code. I wanted to try it out so I opened up all of the links shared during the "Brain Dump/App Smackdown" and converted them into a list to share. You can check them out here! #EdCampTriValley Braindump Resource Links.

Thanks #edcamptrivalley team, Traci Bonde, Lisa Highfill, Karen Wier-Brown (@kweirbrown) and Sherri Sweeney (@Sherri_Sweeney)! What an amazing event! Ron Hubbard  (@IamRonHubbard) sums it up well! See you all next October! 

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