I've had this idea, after watching the response to the Google Teacher Academies, of holding regional/local 1-day Web 2.0 workshops for educators. (I have already talked to the folks running the Google stuff just to make sure they didn't feel I would be competing with them.)

Here's what I was thinking:

1. Organize in certain cities, and have local educators sign up to actually facilitate topics
2. No requirements to come (geared toward newbies)
3. Short on lecture, long on hands-on

Any appeal? Any ideas?

Tags: pd

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Steve,

This is a great idea but how are you going to motivate teachers to come. That is a big obstacle in much of the professional development lately. Even though we are required to have so many hours, too many teachers have the attitude that their job only includes the hours that they have to be in the classroom. Then there is the money and budget issues.
I think this is a wonderful idea! I use to be a Discovery Field Manager for North Florida and we planned many Days of Discovery for our teachers. They were one day sessions that had plenty of hands on and time to network built in. I had funds of course from Discovery, but here are some other thoughts.

Hopefully you can find sites that are willing to open for free. Always take that into consideration.
I would also charge $10 for the lunch preparations and snacks. Non-refundable if they don't show up.
Check with all the various companies that you will be supporting - such as Ning, Flickr, etc. See if anyone has any literature to share or better yet, doorprizes to give away. Pens, notebooks, and other items are also a good thing to look at. If you get literature from the various companies you can either have them placed on a special table for people to pick up or give out in a session. I'd also ask people to bring their favorite conference bag with them so you don't need to worry about providing bags.
Check with local companies for donations for doorprizes. You'd be amazed at what they donate! In SC, I was the donation queen. I had one of a kind gem jewelry, pearls, expensive walkie-talkies, tons of gift cards, nights in hotel, and more donated for various events. Anyway, doorprizes are fun for networking games or for other purposes. I think networking time needs to be built in.
Now that's the fun stuff. The most important is content. You 're right, there are those three levels. I'd have level 3s teach classes in as many areas as you can, but here's something else to think about. Some of those level 2's have picked up on a few tools and actually train others in how to use it or know some tricks that the level threes could use for their own trainings of more level 2s and ones. So don't shut them out. If possible, have a session on - oh let's say blogging - for level 1, 2, and 3. Make sure the content is for those levels. I went to a Classroom Connect Conference once, paid for a level 2 workshop and the instructor started at level 1. I paid for another workshop at another conference for Dreamweaver Level 1, and the instructor started on level 3. So just ask that your presenters are sensitive to the levels they are teaching.

Is it possible to plan this for one day that EVERYONE around the world can implement? The reason I'm asking is because if we say we're going to do this on June 5, and the various regions all set up the sites and start planning, one of the things you can actually do is show the collaboration with people in other states. We could even set up a blinking contest like that commercial. Maybe you can even host a few online sessions for those who can't make it using Vyew or Webex.

This could be the first non-corporate controlled, truly for educators conference.

And as for motivation- for this, those who want to come will come. Those who don't, oh well. I bet you all know a great group of educators who would attend and pay $10 (or $30 if you have to pay for the site).
Yes! This has the advantage of connecting local people with each other, and then everyone to the (flat) world. Please do this.
If you want help with ads and design for how the working session goes, you've got it. I'm sure many of us would get behind this in a big way, I know I would.
Susan's response about the Washington ESD's got me to thinking. I'm in Washington, too, but I teach in a private school. Perhaps it would be a good idea to contact the private school associations, as well. Our association, the Pacific Northwest Association of Independent Schools, has a tech listserv that is pretty active and information about these sorts of professional development opportunities spread like crazy. Oftentimes, the independent schools get left out of pd events simply because no one knows how to contact them.

Knowing my fellow private school techies, they'd think something like this would be really cool and I'm sure you'd get some help in organizing and spreading the word!
I think this a great idea! I know Los Angeles and surrounding areas have mutliple locations where this can happen. Our District has folks (at least one who is also a member on classroom 2.0) who offer workshops in Web 2.0 technologies and would be perfect for this (hint, hint)
I love the idea of making this available all over via Skype or videoconferencing! We're planning a similar web 2.0 inservice day for staff when school starts in late August, and wouldn't it be great to have an hour where we could tap into another workshop and communicate with teachers somewhere else in the country! Once I know our dates, I'd be thrilled to know if anyone would be interested in this option!

This effort reminds me a little of how TechForum works although it is not hands-on, but sort of a traveling "road" show of possibilities.

I agree with Skip about the follow-up. This seems like the most difficult feature. I also am finding in my district that as we get more teachers interested at my campus, it's starting to be overwhelming because they have a lot of support needs that it is hard to keep up with, and more than I as a librarian and my tech coordinator can provide. We need a plan to keep up with the support side that's more thought-out (as do many places!)

It'd be great to integrate this with the Online web 2.0 conference! That is a site where teachers could get additional followup by attending the virtual conferences when they have time on their own, or even meeting on a campus to "view" particular video conferences.

I'm going to follow this discussion and see how this idea works out! We'd love it to come to Austin!
i'd say a fair amount of our time at the goggle teacher academy in nyc was spent looking at non-goggle tools. in fact, most of us were selected to attend the academy based on our use on non-goggle products.

i think there lies the point of using web2.0 tools. a web2.0 user is going to employ a variety of web applications that can be easily shared because they're accessible to many people. google's apps are only a part of this methodology.
This is a great idea - any chance of adding an international component for international school teachers?
You look like me in SL, maybe we are related? SL, meg writer, rl meg ormiston!
I just finished tech camp and 25 face to face was a LOT to manage with one instructor. I think we need to think about teams that could work together to help manage the information flow. If I had team taught the class it would have been easier to meet everyone's needs.
They did produce some amazing artifacts! http://techcamp.ning.com/
I love the idea of even more extensive online preparation. A podcast series is a great idea. I would also be willing to join you in western Wisconsin if you host anything.
Man, that sounds fun!
What about "Classroom 2.0 Boot Camp?" I've got a friend in Hilo who runs a charter school right on the bay that would love to host! :)

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