On September 13th, swarms of people converged at the Willets Road School in Nassau County, Long Island. This is a common happening at the Roslyn Heights school, as students file in and out on a daily basis. But this was no ordinary day, and the students were nowhere to be found. The Willets Road School was hosting Long Island’s first ever EdCamp, and the people circulating the school were all stakeholders in education. Teachers, Principals, PTO Members, Instructional Technologists, and Consultants were all on hand for the event.
So what is EdCamp?
EdCamp is type of educational conference built on a specific set of principles.
- EdCamps are free to attend and have no commercial or vendor presence.
- The presentations are fueled by the participants attending. If a participant has an area of expertise or a topic they’d like to discuss, they can post it on the presentation board, and facilitate a session.
- You do not have to be an expert on a topic to facilitate a session.
- As the session board fills, participants choose the sessions they attend based on the topics that meet their needs.
The result is an amazing day of discussion, collaboration, and learning amongst passionate educators.
The Inception of Long Island’s First EdCamp
The idea to bring EdCamp to Long Island came from the minds of Danielle Gately and Don Gately, two administrators from the East Williston and Jericho school districts respectively. Under their leadership, a small group of educators from all over Long Island signed on to form the EdCamp LI Organizing Team. The rest is history, as they say, and after much work by team members like Dan McCabe and Audra Beberman, the event was a go. On a rainy Saturday, over 160 educators made their way to Long Island’s first EdCamp.
The day was kicked off with a special edition of #NYedchat that was streamed lived on Youtube and tweeted on Twitter. The presentation board quickly filled, and educators were buzzing all over the building learning from colleagues, collaborating, and discussing best practices for engaging and instructing students. Session after session, educators shared what works in education and how we can improve our own classrooms, schools, and districts. It was truly a day to remember. In an uncertain time in education, one thing was very clear on September 13th, there are a ton of caring, passionate educators working extremely hard to get this thing right for our kids.
Visit the EdCamp Long Island Website for more information and future events.
Follow them on Twitter @EdCampLI