What’s a connected educator?

I know it’s nothing new any more. If you’re reading this blog you are probably part of a community of connected educators. We read blogs. We write blogs. We share resources and ideas via Twitter. We meet at online conferences. We collaborate via Googledocs and wikis and Skype.

It still seems like magic to me…

In just a few tweets, five  PYP educators, two in different parts of Australia, one in Hong Kong, one in Indonesia and one in Japan form a team without ever meeting. Within a couple of days we are exchanging ideas on a Googledoc and working collaboratively on a wiki. Connections are made. Learning is shared. Friendships are formed.

A week or so later, we have created a buzz amongst other PYP educators around the world. #pypchat is born, a fortnightly live Twitter conversation, by IB PYP  educators, about issues related to teaching and learning. PYP is the Primary Years Program of the International Baccalaureate, but the chat is open to anyone who’s interested.

The inaugural #pypchat has close to 50 participants from all over the globe. It’s early evening in Jakarta and Jay has his 4 year old with him. Hannah is kicking back on the couch after dinner in Melbourne. Tanja and Miranda in Accra have been given time out in the middle of the school day to participate. In Hong Kong, it’s Jen’s birthday and her family is waiting for a celebration dinner. Stephanie in Ohio and Alexandra in Santiago are up in the early hours to join us before work. Craig has just left a staff meeting in Saigon…

Like all such Twitter chats, the conversation is fast and furious. It helps that as PYP educators, we have a common language. There is barely time to breathe as ideas are exchanged, beliefs are challenged and questions are raised.

Sarah tweets from Hong Kong in the morning that her head is still buzzing.

I can’t wait to see how the chat is depicted by reflective illustrator, Mega in Batam….


18 thoughts on “What’s a connected educator?

  1. Edna, this is what makes learning exhilaration. Why wouldn’t you want to be a part of connected learning? I’m sad that teachers who feel they don’t have enough time miss out on these opportunities. What they ‘have to cover’ sometimes gets in the way of fantastic learning opportunities. Thanks for sharing.


  2. Edna
    I watched the #pypchat in awe of how so many educators from such an array of places, shared and connected. I love how these things just seem to grow a life of their own, spurred by the enthusiasm of a few and then joined and accelerated by other like minded colleagues. A by-product of your chat amongst those already familiar with the IB PYP terms, was an increased awareness in those less familiar – it had me browsing the websites and learning about Learner profiles etc. Teachers taking control of their own learning, sharing their knowledge and questions, is a powerful thing. Off to TeachMeet for a similar feeling ….



  3. Thanks, Tania. I know. It’s inexplicable, isn’t it? Having said that though, there were a few participants in the chat who are new to Twitter.They found it exhilarating, as you said. Maybe they will help us spread the word 🙂


  4. I noticed your chat on Twitter. Your post says it all re the value of connecting with others.Those who say they don’t have the time don’t realize the time it can save! In moments reading a tweet for example one may have a brilliant lesson resource!


  5. I agree, it truly is incredible and awe-inspiring, even when you’ve been part of this interconnectedness in the past. I’d like to make a toast to the forward-thinkers who truly create CHANGE. Together we grow, collaborate and become what we inspire our children and students to be. 🙂


  6. It was an exciting experience and I am thrilled that I was able to participate. I enjoyed being part of the conversation (even though I am still getting used to the speed at which the discussion takes place) and connecting with new educators in other parts of the world – my PLN is growing! Thanks Edna for helping us with your great ideas and initiatives to get connected.


  7. Edna, found out about the #pypchat from @coffa at Teachmeet Melb yesterday. PYP is something I am interested in exploring further – so looking forward to participating in future #pypchats and being inspired. The wiki is a great resource already and I’m know I will be delving into that further. You have to love the power of twitter.


  8. Sorry I missed the first chat, I’ve had a look at the archives. Hope to make it next week. Just been on #globalclassroom chat, discussing digital divide. Made me think that three years ago I had never heard of PLN and now I cant imagine not having one. And made me think of how our Kindergarten children are using twitter, Google docs, Skype, blogs, VoiceThreads etc. It’s all my Kindergarten children know but it still feels like magic to me! Looking forward to the next piece of #pypchat magic!


  9. Edna,

    Before this course that I am enrolled in, I had no idea how widely used blogging was for teachers. I find it so amazing that we are connected to people around the world so quickly. It is quite an accomplishment for you to be able to collaborate so effectively and expand each other’s horizons.


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