Yep, you’re all registered, your travel plans are confirmed, your iPad or other device is charged, and you are rarin’ to go at Padcamp tomorrow.
Some of you are likely wondering what to expect … what EXACTLY will the day be like?
Let’s start at the beginning.
When you arrive at Galloway Township Middle School (click here for detailed directions), expect the doors to open around 8am. We (the organizing team) will be scurrying around getting things ready but the Registration Table should be set up and ready for you to check in. If you have a printed ticket, bring it, but if you don’t, that’s okay, too. (We’ll check you in either way.)
Once you’ve checked in, you’ll find your way to the gorgeous GTMS Cafetorium, where you’ll be able to get a cup of coffee and a light bite to eat while you chat excitedly with some fellow Padcampers about the day ahead.
You will power up your electronic device, sign onto the free wifi, and start planning your day. But how? There is no schedule or list of sessions! (Here comes the cool part…)
We get to BUILD IT. Together! Here’s how it works:
People are sitting around with some colleagues, talking about an app or something they’re interested in or passionate about…
Next thing you know, someone gets inspired, walks up to the session board and fills out a schedule card with something they want to talk about (NOT GIVE A PRESENTATION ON):
… and BOOM! It’s ON! Away we go!
Over the next hour or so, the process repeats itself, and next thing you know, the session board is nearly full:
It’s all loaded into a Google Doc that everyone can see on their devices. Curious about last year’s sessions? Click here to see what people were talking about. (We will have a new one for this year.)
We’ll have a few opening remarks to start the day, then at around 10:00 am, people head off to wherever they want to go.
LOOK CAREFULLY AT THE PHOTO ABOVE. Does it resemble any “conference” you’ve ever been to? Probably not. What DOES it look like? A group of passionate, knowledgeable colleagues sharing ideas and information. THAT IS WHAT PADCAMP IS ALL ABOUT!
Participants check the schedule throughout the day, moving to sessions that interest them – breaking for lunch (FREE PIZZA!) in the cafeteria and then heading back out for two more sessions before the end of day wildly popular app “SMACKDOWN:”
Basically, it’s OPEN MIKE TIME where participants come up and share an app or website they find interesting or helpful. The challenge is YOU ONLY HAVE TWO MINUTES! It’s easy and fun and everyone gets involved – even kids!
The day ends as we give away our cool raffle prizes, including an iPad Mini from EdTechTeacher and a Kindle Fire from the EIRC – and MORE!
Finally, we say our goodbyes, and everyone goes home happy.
Still, you may be wondering…
WHAT IF I HAVE NOTHING TO TALK ABOUT? WHAT IF I DON’T WANT TO LEAD A SESSION?
No problem! Someone has to be in the audience!
I AM TOTALLY NEW TO IPADS/TABLETS. WHAT IF I HAVE NOTHING TO CONTRIBUTE TO THE CONVERSATION?
Don’t be silly. EVERYONE has something to add to the conversation, even if it’s a question or plea for help. You CAN just listen too. It’s okay! Really!
I AM HAVE EXPERTISE ABOUT [X TOPIC], CAN I BRING THE PRESENTATION I RECENTLY GAVE AT [X CONFERENCE] AND DO IT AGAIN?
We would LOVE you to share your KNOWLEDGE but please LEAVE THE POWERPOINT AT HOME! Padcamp is an informal learning experience. We’ve found that formal presentations tend to make the sessions passive and “one-way.” We’re much more interested in your facilitating a conversation!
I HEARD THERE WERE AWESOME SESSIONS LAST YEAR ABOUT TOP IPAD APPS. WILL THERE BE A SIMILAR SESSION AT THIS PADCAMP TOO?
As far as we know, Padcamp co-organizer and iPad educator extraordinaire Betty Napoli WILL be leading a session (or two!) on this subject, and yes, this will be more of a presentation, but in this case, it’s totally okay! We are also interested in having AS MANY OF THESE KINDS OF SESSIONS AS WE CAN, led by anyone willing, especially featuring apps for particular subject areas.
WHAT IF I DON’T SEE A SESSION ABOUT A PARTICULAR TOPIC I AM INTERESTED IN?
Propose a session! Seriously! You don’t have to be an expert to lead a session – you just need to have an interest and something to contribute to the conversation. Why? Because the people who ATTEND your session will have something to contribute too! You will be AMAZED at the conversation and what you ALL will learn.
Ok! That’s all for now. See you tomorrow!
Your Friendly Neighborhood Padcamp Organizing Team