November 13-17 was International Education Week!
To celebrate a week full of exciting global education events, here's my round up of one of my favorite parts. In the true spirit of designing a global conference, Lucy Gray and Steve Hargadon have assembled an incredible lineup and have allowed for equity where other conferences do not.
Here are the 5 things I love about The Global Education Conference.
1. It's Free
Conferences are typically expensive, cost prohibitive for many. Even if you live in the same city where they are being held, there are still fees. Now imagine you are a teacher in a remote area and barely have resources for your classroom let alone funding to travel to a professional development conference. There's no way you would be able to attend a conference unless you forked over the money yourself. The Global Education Conference smashes the financial barriers, and all you need is an internet connection.
2. 24 Hours a Day for Four Days
The conference takes place over four days. This year it ran from November 13-16, and presenters and participants from all over the world logged in at all hours of the day and night. Insomnia? No problem, there's global learning for you! Early riser with time to kill before work? Yup, there's a session for you too and everything in between.
3. Everything is Recorded
And if 24/7 isn't enough, all of the sessions are recorded and archived so you can view them later or as many times as you want. You can access the recordings in Blackboard Collaborate, MP3, or MP4 formats are available for all sessions. You can even find the keynotes on youtube. Speaking of recordings, if you are interested in my session, Self-Identity and Global Connection, you can find the full recording here. You may even hear my cat Allagash in the background. She was really excited about #globaled17 too!
Another amazing thing about participating live in the conference is the connections you can make. You can use the chat box in any session, join the community, post to message boards, meet other educators to get involved in global projects, and just be in an online space with like-minded people. Teaching can be a very lonely world sometimes, so it's nice to know that you can reach out to a supportive community any time you need it.
To me, equity is the most important piece of this conference. Gray and Hargadon have not only removed financial boundaries but are conscious of the platform they use to allow people from all over the world to participate either live or asynchronously by understanding that bandwidth can be a barrier to participation. They provide training and support with moderators.
It is truly an amazing feat they have accomplished. Hats of to them and to everyone who presented and participated to help education become more global!