A while back, several local educators on Twitter began thinking about organizing a regional teachmeet. This happened in a pretty organic way. I received a message from Gene Gordon, asking if anyone in my network would be interested in getting together in this way. I asked a handful of my local colleagues and friends. They said yes. Gene and his wife Anne Marie asked theirs. They said yes. We invited everyone else to join in the planning via Twitter, email, and our blogs. I may have offered up my home for a planning meeting, and I’m pitching in to handle some of the details, but there are a good many others working hard to make sure this happens, and all of us would love for YOU to be a part of that as well.
Many of us have organized large-scale conferences before, and most of us have participated in different unconference events, but despite that, this is our first try at something that is fairly new to all of us. We’re really excited about making this work, keeping things real, and making sure that the event remains what it is supposed to be: free, informal, and based on the work of real teachers in real classrooms.
I wanted to post what we’ve been up to as far as planning is concerned. We’d love to get more input as we move forward and if you have expertise to share, please know that we’re eager to learn from you.
The teachmeet will be held on May 30th or June 6th near Batavia, NY. Our theme is Connecting Regionally, Thinking Globally. We’ve contacted GCC, and we’re planning to bat around options for hosting it there in the coming week or so. We plan to follow this model fairly closely, and we’ll be soliciting input from everyone who plans to attend regarding the topics they’d like to touch upon in sessions. We’ll begin at 10am and finish around 2pm. At the top of each hour, fifteen minute meetings will take place. Seven minute sessions will be sandwiched in between, and plenty of time will be allowed for passing. Space will be provided to continue conversations that begin in these meetings, and we’re planning to hit up a coffee shop or restaurant afterward as well.
Teachers will be invited to attend, as will administrators, students, and parents. The event will belong to no single BOCES, consultant, or agency. Anyone is welcome to attend, but everyone will be discouraged from marketing their products or services at this event, and care will be taken to assess whether or not this is happening throughout the day. This isn’t an event that we want to inspire any competition around. We hope to start small, enjoy each other’s company, and build on whatever success we may experience. That’s about it for now. Stay tuned for more information in the coming weeks, and feel free to lend a hand if you are able to. We’ll be tagging posts and tweets about this event #WNYTM09, and we hope you’ll do the same. Let me know if you have any questions or concerns. Thanks!