Encouraged by fellow CSU student Heather Bailie I participated in my first Teachmeet in July. The Melbourne Immigration Museum hosted the event where educators take ownership of their own personal learning and meet face-to-face to share their ideas, strategies and tools by presenting or simply attending. Presenters can sign up for a 2 minute or 7 minute slot. I co-presented with Heather on Ethical Participation in the Digital Environment, a wiki we collaboratively created along with Amanda Lucas and Glenda Morris for ETL523, Digital Citizenship in Schools.
Heather speaks about the benefits of participating in Teachmeets in this video.
Retrieved from https://youtu.be/JW-ENj1h6LY
Leading up to the Teachmeet, we did a Google Hangout to plan our presentation and kept in touch using Twitter. We both promoted the Teachmeet to our personal learning networks (PLNs) on Twitter and Facebook.
Looking forward to #tmmelb on Saturday where @KMalbon and I will be sharing our learning module from #ETL523 https://t.co/LgFfMfgoWG
— Heather Bailie (@hbailie) July 21, 2016
Teachmeet Melbourne uses a wiki to organise and promote upcoming events. Teachmeet Melbourne is also on Twitter as @Teachmeet Melbourne and uses the hashtag #TMMelb so that the community can continue to engage virtually. This is a great example of computer networks mediating communication and linking people (Siemens, 2008).
I was a bit nervous because I had not presented outside of my own workplace before but I need not have worried. Everyone at the Teachmeet was so welcoming and the atmosphere was informal and relaxed. Presenting at the Teachmeet also led to me being approached to be part of a panel of presenters at an ALIA Schools seminar in August (thanks to Heather recommending me).
These two presenting experiences have given me a new found confidence that what I know and can share is valuable to others. I met new people in person and will continue to follow or connect with them online and leverage these weak ties (people outside my usual social network) when I need them (Pegrum, 2010). My PLN is expanding and I am becoming more active by participating, sharing and connecting rather than just consuming and lurking.
Pegrum, M. (2010). ‘I Link, Therefore I Am’: Network literacy as a core digital literacy. In E-Learning and Digital Media, 7(4), 346-354.
Siemens, G. (2008, September 28). A brief history of networked learning. Retrieved from http://elearnspace.org/Articles/HistoryofNetworkLearning.rtf