Recently I’ve found that there are some useful Twitter communities forming around conferences, not just people using Twitter for twitters sake as when the microblog appeared a couple of years ago! This means that attendees who may not know each other or even ever meet are bound in conversation by a simple hash tag eg. #hksummit. This tag was used at the recent Apple Education Leadership Summit in Hong Kong.
During the keynotes, panel discussion and workshops there was a fascinating subtext being formed around the content. Photos of participants and slides were posted to Flickr, links to videos, and quotes from presenters appeared in a livestream via the hash-tag. Also informative, were the reflections on the conference process, the conversation between those there live, and those elsewhere wanting to know more. You can add me to your Twitter PLN here.
The challenge now for schools is to offer student access to these such conversations, especially if they want to ‘continue’ to be relevant venues for learning. Some of the speakers and organisers talk about the asynchronous global community that took part in the conference in this video below.
Kim Cofino wrote it best recently where she pondered:
“I didn’t find myself in awe of any specific presentations or the information I learned from them, but I reveled in the power of my personal learning network to help me make connections, push my thinking, and expand my horizons.”
The same occurred at the recent Educause conference. While many said it wasn’t the best conference they had been to, many were impressed with the stream of conversation happening in the background via Twitter and other web2ls like CoverItLive.What matters most to me in these adult learning environments is the spontaneous community that forms around the content and conversation. The document (#hksummit) left behind by the conversation is also a fairly realistic appraisal of an event.I’ve also enjoyed many of the reflections in blog posts by #hksummit attendees for example:
Brett Moller: This conference had fascinating conversations happening, mostly facilitated by twitter. Simply by tagging all tweets with #hksummit, we suddenly had an amazing conversation that is still continuing today. The richness of the conversation and the content shared is truly remarkable. It is a conversation that is recorded and easy to follow. The value in this conference was found in so many places, however, the greatest treasure is in the conversations and the network that is built.
Julie Lindsay: The power of connecting with and extending my own personal learning network is priceless at this type of event.
Andrew Torris: I can also guarantee you that the admin that attended the HKsummit left empowered and filled with ideas. Change takes time. Change takes bravery. Change takes guts. Change takes focus. How much of each of these things depends on the time and place.
Kim Cofino: I had seen some of his slides before, but it amazed me, yet again, how ironic it is to be hearing from a vendor the most relevant, forward-thinking, pedagogically sound ideas for education.
Source: superkimbo on Flickr.