Experience the new TAFE NSW website... Launch Beta!
Browse hundreds of courses with a wide range of study options from online courses to diploma qualifications, training and full-time education. Learn more
A variety of scholarship opportunities are available for different areas of study, across the state. Learn more
View our news, press releases, videos, announcements and publications about TAFE NSW. Learn more
We should never become so isolated in our classrooms that we
are unaware of those around us
For some people, social media can be a dirty word. In just the last
five years I'm sure that most people know of someone who's had a messy
relationship breakup because of Facebook, Twitter or some other form
of social media.
However, there's a rapidly developing movement by teachers to change
the way we use social media. This is connect, encourage and share with
other teachers across districts, regions, states and countries. Social
media is fast becoming the platform for professional development and
greater globalisation of our profession. With greater access to
technology and faster internet speeds, teachers are embracing new
forms of technologies not only to engage their students but to form
new learning networks and learning spaces outside the confines of
their classroom or staff rooms.
Fifteen years ago a group of teachers met in an Irish pub to share
what was going on in their classrooms. They met to encourage, discover
and share what had or hadn't been working in their classrooms and they
used this time as a way of connecting to each other and sharing their
knowledge and experiences. Since then this 'Teach Meet' concept has
taken off and become a global phenomenon. Teach Meet first arrived in
Sydney in May last year. Over 300 teachers from primary, high schools,
public and private schools and TAFE colleges met for a night of
sharing and encouragement. And it was completely free. All the
presenters gave their time willingly and the venue was also provided
free of charge. All traditional barriers were broken down and a
wonderfully rich evening of sharing and conversation followed. Some
talks were only for two minutes, others were longer. But all of these
talks covered a range of topics, ideas and food for thought.
I was so inspired by this that on Friday 26 July I hosted the
inaugural Central Coast Teach Meet. Apart from a couple of printed
flyers, the event's only advertising was through social media and a
few emails. The venue was free (Kincumber Neighbourhood Centre) and
the presenters gladly gave of their time. Overwhelmingly those who
came want another one and I now have a team of teachers who can help
organise and maintain the momentum that was created. The sharing continues.
We should never become so isolated in our classrooms that we are
unaware of those around us. Sharing with our colleagues, friends and
family allows us to keep our teaching fresh, reflective and inspired,
rather than becoming stale and rigid.
I'd like to encourage anyone who would like to host a Teach Meet in
your hometown or district to have a chat with me and start one of your
own. We are a global community but sharing with local teachers who
have unique ideas that are relevant to specific communities is very
important to our students and ourselves.