April 12th, 2012 is the date. Althouse College at Western University has been booked as the venue, the website is up and running (check it out here) and the organizing committee is ready to spread the word about London's first EdCamp. We've got some great stuff planned and are excited to invite educators, parents and community members.
I've been to two EdCamps, both of which were great learning experiences, but were also quite different from each other. EdCamp Hamilton was held in a small elementary school in Ancaster Ontario and followed what I had read about the typical EdCamp experience. Participants registered, got some coffee and treats and then began to post their ideas on a large planning board in the hall. EdCampers were then called to hear a brief introduction while the organizing committee planned the sessions and the rooms. Then we were off for a great day of conversation, friendship, networking and learning. It sparked something inside me that I hadn't experienced for a long time ~ the butterflies of excitement from learning!
This summer I attended EdCamp Leadership in New Jersey at the lovely STEM center at Kean University. I wanted to go because I noticed in my social media streams people I respect for their leadership, commentary and opinions were attending and I really wanted to hear from them in person. People like Tom Whitby, Joe Mazza and Eric Sheninger. I wasn't disappointed. However, there were a few differences at EdCamp leadership. They had an opportunity for anyone to come up and give a short "slam" about a new app, device or web 2.0 tool they had discovered, which I thought was a great idea. The biggest difference was that the sessions were more prepared then created from the participants. Don't get me wrong, the sessions I attended were all great, but they were planned and a couple even had PowerPoint presentations! It didn't lend itself to as much conversation as Hamilton which was slightly disappointing but I certainly learned a lot and made some great connections with other attendees.
So what's in store for EdCamp London? Well, I don't want to give too much away as some things are still in the planning stage but you can expect a combination of both EdCamp Hamilton and EdCamp Leadership. Sessions will be participant driven. We will have slam sessions. There will be prizes, lunch and coffee. And we have a few surprises up our sleeves that we're sure you'll love. So stay tuned, I'll blog about them as we get closer to the event. But in the meantime, below is the schedule for the day and short video from EdCamp Philly that gives a great overview of the EdCamp experience. Register soon as space will be limited! If you have any questions, ideas or thoughts about EdCamp let me know in the comments section.
8:00 - 9:30 - Registration, Refreshments, Networking, Posting of ideas
9:30 - 9:55 - Welcome, Slam Session, Session times & rooms posted to Guidebook and Planning board in lobby
10:00 - 11:00 - Session 1
11:00 - 12:00 - Session 2
12:00 - 1:00 - Lunch (Provided)
1:00 - 2:00 - Session 3
2:00 - 3:00 - Session 4
3:00 - 3:30 - Wrap Up, Slams, Prizes