I am pleased and proud. I’ve helped make a thing that is good, a thing that people like, a thing that is useful and that makes the world better. What we’ve made is an event that brings together friends, strangers and their families and mixes them together in a different kind of way. And it works.

For those that weren’t there, #CampEd14 was an educational event which took place over a long weekend spent at a residential education centre (Cliffe House) in Yorkshire. Attendees were, on the whole, educators and their families. People mainly camped and many volunteered to run ‘sessions’ as diverse as extracting DNA from bananas to orienteering.

I know that other people are already taking care of the details of the event. I would like to reflect for a moment on what I think makes it a bit different and very special:

  • The ‘gaps’: I have always said that whenever you go on a course, some training or a conference, it is the gaps in between where some of the best stuff happens; the coffee breaks, over lunch, in the bar. CampEd significantly widens those gaps. For me, this is exemplified by (amongst other things) the traditional CampEd walk. The walk lowers the pace yet further and gently moves people into meandering conversation to accompany their steps.
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  • The venue: I remember the moment when I realised Cliffe House was tailor made for CampEd. It was as if (as Will Ryan would say) a dam burst in my head. Each time I thought of something CampEdish, Cliffe House had the answer.
  • The activities: What does an outstanding lesson look like? More’s the point, what does it ‘feel’ like? How many of us educators can say that we have been in an outstanding lesson as a learner recently? Anyone at #CampEd14 can truly say that they have.
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  • The people: Here we had a ‘conference’, a learning event that catered for attendees aged from a matter of months up to… well, quite a bit older… We also mixed a crowd of teachers/educators with their children and (in many cases) non-educator partners.  ‘Exit interviews’ with these non-educators suggest that the event had certainly passed the ‘spousal’ test (as Bill Lord coined it) in that they would all recommend CampEd and attend again in future.Finally, special thanks to a couple of people: Bill, who has picked me up when I’ve been flagging and who will forever be my Twitter confidante and Tony Parkin who quietly but significantly supports in so many ways – although I would have preferred him to have chosen a time other than 7.00am for his philanthropic road-building efforts in the camp-site.
    Mr Parkin in his tireless pursuit of Cliffe House Wifi

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    Mr Lord in his wheel-free Bath chair

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Leaving things so late has inevitably made things much more difficult. What can I add to these incredibly comprehensive #campEd12 blogposts? Please read them!
Chris Ratcliffe
Matt Pearson
Alex Bellars
Brynn Llewellyn
Dawn Hallybone
Bev Evans
John McLear
Tom Briggs
Emma Dawson
John Sayers
Elizabeth Ratcliffe
Jo Badge (Den-building)
Jo Badge (Science)
Bill Lord
Catherine Steel
Tony Parkin
(Have I missed yours out? Please let me know)

I suppose I had a slightly differing perspective of the event as one of the joint organisers alongside Bill Lord and Helen Daykin. As Bill has said, we built it in the hopes that they would come. And they did. The diversity of attendees was good, but not good enough (more on that later). The weather obliged (at least by staying dry). The content was superb. And the ‘coming-together’ surpassed all expectations. what is the safest online gambling sites

So, if you’ve read the posts above, you’ll know what it was all about, you’ll know what happened so I’ll add my reflections rather than run over ground well-trod already. wsj virtual casino

Firstly, I have a thirst for learning (whether that is my own or that of other people) and to be immersed in the midst of rich learning is a joy that I experience in the classroom, at Teachmeets, at a conference and yes, even on a course. This kind of rich learning was evident in abundance at #campEd12 but it differed from my usual experience of learning in one important and unique way. Adults and youngsters were equal partners in the learning experience in a way that I have rarely (if ever) experienced – certainly not on that kind of scale. I think this is important. I like it when young people attend conferences, give presentations, showcase their work, present at Kidsmeets etc. But this was different again. #CampEd12 was a wonderful opportunity to learn with and from others (whether a babe in arms or an ‘old man’).
(This picture courtesy of Dawn Hallybone) tarzan king of the jungle slots

Having enjoyed this first hand with my own wife and children and being struck by the power and impact of this event on me personally and my family, my thoughts inevitably turned to those families that need this kind of experience most. Those families who, as John Sayers says “…don’t get much more beyond the end of their street let alone another county or country!” I say ‘families’ because for me, this is where we should be aiming. How we get there, I have no idea. To extend the event or provide a similar offering to those not in the ‘edtech’/Twitter community would require a wholly different (and more comprehensive) approach to the organisation than the one Bill, Helen and I took. It is however, something that I think we should all think about. real money roulette app iphone

At conferences, courses and other events, I am a big fan of ‘the gaps in between’ as productive hubs for networking and learning. These are the coffee breaks, the opportunities at your table to talk with others. The chat over lunch. The hovering about before the start, finding out more about people. CampEd12 widened the ‘gaps in between’ and some good stuff happened in that space.

Finally, thank you all for coming. Thank you to all the people who led such wonderful sessions. Thank you for the warm thoughts and distant support of those unable to attend (this year). I dare not name you all for fear of missing someone out. However, cheers to you, Bill and you, Helen! We built it – they came. real money casino app for iphone

There are many, many photographs. Some are here. uk casinos accepting us players

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