Sydney Teach-Meet

Whenever I am lucky enough to leave my classroom for a day and attend a professional development session or conference I always come back wishing I had more time to connect with the other teachers there. I have been thinking about this quite a bit lately and my personal conclusion is that there is a need for more teachers to connect face to face with like minded educators, to talk, share and swap ideas.

It seems that I am not alone, I have for a while known that in the UK there are a series of meetings being held around the country called teach-meets. Recently I heard about a group of New Zealand teachers who are proposing to hold an un-conference next holidays in Wellington for the purpose of making connections and learning from each other. I know of other American and Australian teachers who regularly meet for coffee or dinner.

I also feel really strongly that it is time to try and break down some of the barriers between private, public and Catholic schools. It is time to get to know some of the regular tweeters and it is time to share and learn face to face from each other. From new teachers, old teachers and everyone in-between.

So I have decided to try and put my thoughts into action. This week I sent out a tweet and an email to teachers I know, asking the following:

‘I am wondering if any of you would be willing to try and get some kind of teach-meet group off the ground? My vision is to hold something, somewhere in the second week of the next holidays and invite any teacher who wants to come. Just what and how it would run and if we would have presentations or just informal chats, swap sessions or what would depend on many of the variables above.’

I have had many positive responses together with permission from my school, that I can hold this inaugural meeting there. So I am announcing to the world that the inaugural Sydney Teach- Meet for primary teachers is on. It will be held on Tuesday April 19, during the next school holidays at my school, which is on the North Shore, near to the train line. I have started an edmodo group for ideas and am happy to email the code to anyone who is thinking of joining us.

So the challenge is out, If you are a primary school teacher who is interested in sharing, learning or just listening to other teachers in the flesh, I can promise an interesting day. If you know of other teachers keen to learn, or if you just want a day to chat a meet other teachers, join us . Why not bring a colleague? Challenge someone else to start their learning journey. Or if you are a secondary school teacher, or you live elsewhere, why not try to get your own teach-meet off the ground? For further details please see this wiki .

Through little things big things grow. Oh and I have also rashly promised some freshly cooked muffins!

5 Comments

  1. Hi Henrietta,
    Well done to you. This is a valuable initiative and well worth participating in. Over here in NZ we have a similar event which began in 2008 in Auckland as an un-conference.

    Very excited for 2011. Thanks to enthusiastic participants in other regions there will be similar events this year in Tai Tokerau (Northland), Auckland and Wellington… now know as EduCampNZ.

    Check out the resources and ideas on the EduCampNZ wiki, may be some you can use.

    http://educampnz.wikispaces.com

    The success of these events is truly down to the participation and energy of the educators who have attended and I am confident your event will be no different.

    Here’s to lots of learning, links and laughs on the day.

    Cheers,
    Fiona

    PS Good coffee source also a priority over here ;-)

  2. Courtney:

    Hi, If I were a teacher I would attend! Fortunately, I am still a student! As a student, I enjoy learning what other teachers do in their classrooms so I could possibly use it in my classroom to better myself or my students. I look forward to reading a post about how the meeting went!

  3. It is grea that you are keen on learning this way Courtney. One day when you have your own class you will find the connections and lessons you learn fro others blogs a valuable resource. My plan is that Sydney TeachMeets will be a success and will still be going when you graduate, so that you can come too.

  4. Rebecca Warnberg:

    Dear Ms. Miller,
    I admire your dedication to learning ways to improve your teaching style. I think that this conference is a wonderful idea. When educators come together and collaborate about their failures and successes, they will certainly leave wiser than they were before. It is also a great opportunity to encourage other teachers to keep on giving their best for the benefit of their students. Unfortunately, I can’t attend your meeting since I’m still attending the University of South Alabama on my journey to becoming a teacher. I wish I could participate though because this sounds like a great opportunity. I hope it all goes well!
    Sincerely,
    Rebecca Warnberg

  5. Hi Henrietta,

    I am working on a global education program, run by an International Development Organisation (ChildFund Australia), that aims to build connections between children (years 5 and 6) in NSW and QLD with children in Laos, Vietnam and Timor-Lese using a variety of media technologies (social media website, participatory video etc.)

    So far, we have linked more than 150 students in Aust. with kids in the Mekong area, to explore cultural similarities/differences and new technologies.

    I was wondering whether this might be an interesting new media project to present at Teach-Meet Sydney?

    Best regards,

    Kelly

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