PD in my PJs!

9b407nfkqba6camy1c4khljlmzuzfonushhoojmbgttwsh2d2tkjult3d90nw-_e-_lk88imu9yw1630-h1222-noSo today was the Fall 2016 Educators Collaborative Gathering or #TheEdCollabGathering. I can’t believe I haven’t participated in this before! Chris Lehman and his incredible ‘Ed Collaborators’ put together a day of premium professional development delivered right into my home…and it was FREE!

The day kicked off with a passionate  talk from Chris to all of us. He starts, “Educators are people. We are humans. We are humans with concerns, and love, and identities, and families, and so much that make us human. And too often as educators we can walk into our school building or classroom and feel either by choice or by pressure of society or the culture in our school that we need to let go of those of those parts of ourselves, that we may need to let go of parts of our identity, or the things that make us laugh, or the people that we love, the families that we are in. There are times we have to, or feel like we have to let go. And what I want to suggest to you today…is that one piece of your humanity that you can’t let go of, we can’t stop being, is political. Because if you are not political, everything that is happening around us will become predictable.” In essence, Chris invited us to reimagine what being political means.  You need to hear it in his own words here:

Chris then introduced the amazing Katherine Bomer who screen-shot-2016-09-24-at-6-15-08-pminspired us with the a whole group session entitled “Writing is a Journey of Thinking, and the Journey is Everything.  She helped us rethink our concept of the essay and how essay is really literature- not simply 5 paragraphs! Her keynote follows Chris’ keynote in the video above.


After that we were free to choose from an screen-shot-2016-09-24-at-6-26-52-pmamazing lineup of workshops in each of the the next four sessions. How are you supposed to decide which session to choose when they are all phenomenal?? The good news is, every session is archived! So if you missed today’s #EdCollabGathering or you participated, but wanted to check out too many sessions at the same time, you can go back and watch every single session–as much as you want!!

Click HERE to head over to the AGENDA AT A GLANCE page that will link you to each and every session.

Now, I said this was free, but Chris did ask that we pay it forward by making a donation to a charity (since you didn’t have to spend anything on this great PD).

screen-shot-2016-09-24-at-6-33-59-pmKatherine Bomer, chose the charity CASA (Court Appointed Special Advocates) and encouraged participants to consider this as one of the charities we might support in honor of this incredible day of learning. Click on the image or HERE to make a donation. These advocates are there for kids who are caught up in the court system and need someone who knows and cares about them to navigate the legal situation they never asked to be in!

Here are the sessions I participated in:


And if today’s sessions aren’t enough free PD in your PJs, mark your calendars for April 8th! That will be the day for the Spring 2017 #EdCollabGathering!  I can hardly wait! And in the meantime  here’s the link to all the past #EdCollabGatherings on YOUTUBE.

I STORIFIED my tweets here!

I stored my photos here!


What’s On My Book Radar?

screen-shot-2016-09-24-at-8-40-09-pmAuthor Melanie Conklin knows just how to pull your heartstrings until you think they’ll snap, and then gently nurtures them back to a new normal with loving kindness. In her debut book we meet 11 year old Thyme, who’s brother Val has a rare and dangerous cancer.  He has just been accepted into a new drug trial-which is great news. But the family must leave their home and friends and move thousands of miles away  to New York City -which is bad news for Thyme and her sister Cori. All Thyme can do is count the days, and hope for a miracle for her little brother and a way for her to get back home to the life she loved. In the meantime she discovers new friends, a new boy, and a crumudgeon of a neighbor who all plant seeds in the garden of this new life and she must grapple with the guilt and confusion over these conflicting worlds. If this is a first book, I am SO excited to see what other characters Melanie will bring to life for us in her next, and next, and next!

1 thought on “PD in my PJs!

  1. Thanks, Paula, for writing about your learning day. Wasn’t it just fabulous? I so love so many of the presenters for how they make me think way outside the box and yesterday was no exception – every minute of the day!

    Enjoy your Sunday!

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