Well, the dust from #SXSWEdu has settled, but that just means it's time to dust ourselves off and start moving forward on our #edtechbridge promise. At SXSWEdu, we committed to using the session as a starting point toward our mission...
to build an authentic community of EdTech Entrepreneurs (developers) and teachers with the ultimate goal of working together to create great EdTech products that will ultimately benefit students and move education forward.
We hope that you share in our mission and are ready to get to work! This will continue to be a community effort that will rely on the commitment of all stakeholders.
Before we get started, it's important that we understand that the idea here is to build a community that has product development and improvement as the primary goal. This community is not intended to provide an audience for salespeople trying to tout their wares. There are certainly other avenues for that.
It has become increasingly obvious through our discussions with many developers, teachers, administrators, and students that there is a disconnect between developers and the educational community. This disconnect is not intentional and it is neither a developer issue, nor an educator issue. The resounding message that is heard over and over is that educators and developers want to work together and share a common goal of creating products that will help achieve learning outcomes. The common sentiment is that the relationship building is the key to success.
So, to keep it real simple, this is about creating and nurturing mutually beneficial relationships among people interested in becoming part of this community. I know that I will be speaking with many of my educator peers and industry friends and hope you will do the same.
We are not exactly sure what this will look like over time as we need to approach this as a community. We will start with a series of tweetchats in order to get the ball rolling. Please join us for our first tweetchat!
Date: Wednesday, April 2, 2014
Time: 6:00 pm - 7:00 pm EST
please use the hashtag #edtechbridge during our chat
Leading up to the chat, please help us by spreading the word with a simple show of support of the #edtechbridge mission and the upcoming tweetchat. Please spread the word through email, twitter, facebook, google+, linkedIn, etc.
Our tentative list of questions for the chat include the following:
- Q1: What experiences (positive/negative) have you had collaborating with teachers/edtech devs?
- Q2: What advice would you give to teachers who want to be involved? to edtech devs?
Value of community
- Q3: What value do you see in creating a community of edtech devs and teachers?
- Q4: What would you get out of a community like that? What do you want to get out of it in terms of compensation?
How to have the community/what is it
- Q5: Which platform can we use to keep in touch and connect people?
- Google+, tweetchats, face to face (i.e. EdTech Summits)
- Q6: What kind of relationships/partnerships do you want out of this?
- What level of involvement would you be willing to participate in?
- What questions/topics should we address in our next chat?
Your feedback on the choice of questions is always welcome.
While I am at it, I would like to acknowledge a number of people who clearly share this passion and continue to share the message...
William Jenkins from EdTech Stories has joined our efforts in a major way. He has been instrumental in sharing the message and planning our efforts moving forward. He fancies himself a 'recovering edtech salesperson' and brings great insight with regards to what doesn't work in EdTech product development. He has been involved in communities that have been primarily comprised of suppliers and has understood that the education stakeholders have often been missing from the conversations. Please follow William on twitter (@EdTech_Stories) and read his blog. His recent posts have focused on our #edtechbridge mission.
Katya Hott (@katyamuses) is my #edtechbridge partner in crime. Our #SXSWEdu presentation was Katya's brainchild based on the sentiment that #SXSWEdu lacked a teacher presence which contributed to this divide. She asked me to join her and #edtechbridge was essentially born.
Lindsey Own (@lindseyown) and Stephanie Sandifer (@ssandifer) became our kindred spirits as they, too, were presenting on the Strategies for EdTech/ Teacher Engagement. The resounding message that they shared with their panelists Jay Goyal and Dion Lim was the importance of developing relationships as the context to working together. I certainly got the message and was glad to hear it loud and clear in their session as well as ours.
Thank you for your continued support. We hope to see you at our #edtechbridge tweetchat on April 2 at 6pm EST!