Darren Kuropatwa and I were guests on Bob Sprankle, Cheryl Oakes and Alice Barr’s wonderful “Seedlings” live webcast / podcast yesterday afternoon. What fun! Since I was attending the Oklahoma “Last Frontier Council’s Centennial Scout Camporee” in Lawton with my son, Bob was able to “skype out” to me on my cell phone so I could join in the discussions and fun. We set this up via an email Bob sent on Friday, which I received and replied to on my iPhone on the drive down to Lawton from Oklahoma City.
It is remarkable to now count Bob, Cheryl, Alice, and Darren as part of my extended professional learning network, considering the geographic distances which separate us and traditionally would have served as formidable barriers to communication and collaboration. I still have yet to meet either Bob or Darren in person, but was able to meet both Cheryl and Alice at NECC this past summer. Seedlings is published as part of Bob’s “Bit by Bit” podcast, and if you’re not subscribing to it already you should really check it out. I always learn about new ideas and new tools listening to Bob’s shows as well as the Seedlings podcasts. It was a thrill to share my own “geek of the week” finds in this weekend’s show! 🙂 Of course, the focus of our discussions was the free K-12 Online Conference which starts in about a week on October 8th!
I mentioned during the show that our camporee in Lawton was somewhat similar to the images of thousands of tents gathered at the opening of “Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire” for the World Quiddich Championships. Unfortunately none of my photographs adequately convey just how many tents were set up for this event. The organizers estimated we had 6000 people in attendance on Saturday, with about 5000 camping overnight. The main differences between our Centennial camporee experience and Harry’s in “The Goblet of Fire” were that we didn’t get to see any Quidditch in Lawton as part of the formal camporee activities, our tent was quite a bit smaller and less luxurious than that of Arthur Weasley, and fortunately no death eaters showed up to ruin the camporee fun. It was quite remarkable to camp with over 5000 other folks in downtown Lawton! We had fun, and it was certainly exciting to take a break from our Scout activities to “talk k12online” for an hour with an innovative group of creative educators and webcasters! 🙂
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