Most of the entries in the Education section of my RSS aggregator today are about EduBloggerCon. Yesterday somewhere between 80 and 100 educational bloggers met in a very special pre-conference at the Georgia World Congress Center. NECC, billed as the “World’s Premier Ed Tech Conference” starts today and most of the attendees at yesterday’s event are in Atlanta for that. It was a natural time to organize this sort of event.
The hi-tech world of A-List tech bloggers (people at the top of Technorati’s lists) have nothing on the bloggers who were at EduBloggerCon other than a larger audience. The whole event was well organized using a wiki, email and as far as I can tell some discussions in Second Live may have been involved as well. At the last minute I decided to leave my laptop in my hotel room but it appears that I was one of the very few who made that decision. There was live blogging a plenty. There were also virtual attendees there via Skype and Second Life. I which I could have attended the Second Life session but alas I could only be in one place at at time and there were other good sessions going on.
The educational blogosphere was there is full force. People like Will Richardson, Dave Warlick and the Cool Cat Teacher – Vicki Davis were there. So was Anne Davis. And well many many more. Teachers, principals, superintendents, technology coordinators, technology integration specialists, librarians and more. A rather good sample of the mix at NECC actually. There were not many edu bloggers who focus on the political end of things there. Not that the bloggers here didn’t have or express political opinions but the focus at EduBloggerCon was on pedagogy and using Web 2.0 tools to improve teaching and learning. When politics came up is was when discussion turned to the barriers to use of new technology.
The Edu blogosphere doesn’t get the attention in the media that the tech, business, and political blogosphere get and I think that is a shame. There is a lot of innovation going on in education but too much of it is happening in isolation. Social networking and blogging can help make some connections. So too can conferences like NECC. But for the most part the people who need to hear about these innovations the most are the same people who disappear from the end of the spring semester until teachers report back for duty in late summer. Those people are not attending the conferences and they are not reading blogs. Too many of them are not interested in change at all. Only when news of these new best practices gets out in the main stream media are we going to see them get the attention they deserve.
Our students are living in cyberspace but too many of our teachers are not. They are strangers in cyberspace at the same time their students are calling it home.
[Note: Cross posted in my social computing blog.]