Two funny guys. Alec Couros and Dean Shareski are not just funny, they are also great thinkers. Here are two men who put themselves out there, constantly pushing educational reform from the pre-service teacher level. They drive others to think about their practices as teachers and leaders. In our session, Dean emphasized the importance of being a reflective learner, not just a reflective teacher. Alec spoke about his willingness to share personal family moments with the world and how that has become the glue that makes his network work for him, enabling him to help others get connected.
This session really had me thinking about the reality of what so many of us experience on Twitter. Many people in my PLN have been on twitter for several years, they are uber-connected. Some like myself, are just beginning to realize the potential of our PLN connections. Experiences like Educon 2.2, organized by Chris Lehmann and Diana Laufenberg help all of us come together. They are powerful conversations that connect brand new teachers like @profespringer who is openly reflecting on his teaching and learning practice, experienced educators who are just making the leap into open-connected classrooms, state level representatives who are looking for ways to reform higher-ed practices, pre-service teachers who are preparing to take the leap, and educators like Dean and Alec who push us to think and act.
We talk about how we can reform education. We are reforming education through both face-to- face and online communication. We are pushing the envelope when we have role-models like Alec and Dean who connect with the new people who pop into their network. We are moving things forward when we are excited about what we learn and take it back into our classrooms and physical school buildings. Is it happening fast enough for us, perhaps not, but it is happening. Five-hundred educators from all over came together on their own time, and many on their own dollar, to make the educational experience for our students better. There were also many more who attended virtually. We are making progress. We are learning as we go, but we are learning.
Thanks Alec and Dean for helping this educator reflect on her learning.