Monday, November 10, 2014

Student led edcamps

I just participated in a #tlap (Teach Like a Pirate) Twitter chat when someone's post to one of the questions grabbed me. The question and answer were:




It is so simple, yet I had never thought of it. Student led edcamps can be so powerful. For those of you who are unfamiliar with the edcamp style professional development here is a little run-down. Edcamps are referred to as the "unconference" because there are no formal presentations. Instead, educators gather together and using two different color post-its they state what they want to learn and what they are willing to be an expert on. From these post-its sessions are formed.

So how would this look in the classroom? Students can use the edcamp style to create discussion groups. Let those who are the "experts" guide the discussion with the students who might be struggling with the content. There doesn't have to be one "expert" in the group. The power comes from the students getting together to talk about one topic. Use this style to create small groups of students. The best part is the students are guiding their own learning in that moment based on their personal learning needs. 

As learners, we need time to discuss and process hard concepts/ideas. This style allows for those times to take place. Students can document the discussion using a shared Google Document, so that students not in the group can go back to reference. Great study aid!

What about multiple classes coming together to have student led edcamps? I can see the power in this concept. If you choose to adopt this idea, please share how it worked. 

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