Thursday, January 7, 2016

Welcome!

2016 is the third year that the Indiana DOE's Office of eLearning is offering a professional learning day just for edtech coaches. The day is structured around participant driven sessions. Attendees are discouraged from coming with a presentation to share. Rather, they are encouraged to come with topics and questions they would like to discuss. This model is known as the unconference. As a presenter at an unconference, your primary role is to facilitate conversation. This is unlike typical conferences where attendees select pre-planned lectures that are presented by vetted speakers with slide decks on material to get through. The coaches' day of professional learning is all about collaboration and networking to support learning.

In 2014, we had the first statewide unconference in downtown Indianapolis. Last year, we moved the second annual event a little west to Danville. This year, we are headed a bit east of the capitol to meet in South Madison. A new location is just one of the changes on the horizon for the 2016 event.

In the same way that coaches around the state go by different job titles, we have referred to this event with various names. First and foremost, it is an unconference. The unconference model was first picked up in Indiana schools in 2009. At the same time, there were pockets of educational leaders doing the same around the country and a movement called Edcamp was formed in 2010. Given the growing familiarity with Edcamps, we decided to align the Coach UnConference with the brand. With that, the 2016 event has been named Coach Edcamp.