Jun 21

Teach the teachers Meet – From the Beginning

It is exactly a week until the ‘Teach the teachers Meet’ being held at Fulford School. If you haven’t heard of this exciting, innovative and revolutionary event before you can find out about it by clicking here.

I thought I’d write a little blog post explaining how this. now global, event has evolved.

In January we attended a regular Monday lunchtime meeting and Nick Jackson (@largerama) handed us a single piece of A4 paper with the Wikipedia definition of a TeachMeet.

A TeachMeet is an organised but informal meeting (in the style of an unconference) for teachers to share good practice, practical innovations and personal insights in teaching with technology.

He then stated that he wanted US to organise a teachmeet. We were completely open to decide on every aspect of the event and it was made very clear from the start that Nick and Andy Rosie (the member of SLT attached to the Digital Leaders Scheme) would give us very little help. I recall them repeatedly stating that if we wanted anything doing within school we needed to request it. It was made clear that we were in charge of the project.

The first weeks we had several ideas bouncing around and various members wanting to take the project in very different directions. After one productive meeting where we decided on the concept of ‘Teach the teachers Meet’ along with the name. Once the concept had been decided, we then moved onto location. Prior to this, none of us had ever made the attempt to organise an event, this was therefore an entirely new realm.

Our primary idea lay with the amazing STEM center at York University. We had an extensive email exchange with the center followed by a trip up to explore the facilities but due to extremely high costs that we were not able to meet we considered our other options. The logical option was the one glaring at us; the school hall. Whilst it lacks the professionalism that STEM would have brought to the event, it adds something which can be more powerful in my opinion, character. In retrospect I think holding the Teach Meet at Fulford gives it a kind of relaxed feel and emphasizes that this event is put on by students.

Once we had confirmed that we would be holding the event in the school hall the focus changed to the day itself and promotion. We contacted the local council along with local schools to make them aware of the event and get them on board. Nick Jackson used his already substantial contact base in the TeachMeet circuit to stir up some interest but we have had to make many contacts of our own. Several of you reading this probably had no idea who I was before this event but now you’re reading my blog.

To promote the event we have attended several local meetings to promote the TeachMeet along with the TeachMeet in #bMoble12. These meetings have included the school staff briefing to a Digital Leaders awareness event for primary school co-ordinators. Probably the most important decision to be made has been the speakers at the event, we have attempted to include varying age ranges along with innovative ideas. Some of the hardest decisions have been on the simplest of things, the ones that you think would be easy, such as catering, microphones or chairs. We have spent weeks con