Where it All Began
So, who has time to sit around and chit chat when it [time] holds us hostage? People make time for the things they want and find a way to fit them into their schedules —No Matter What. This includes spending time with the family, must-have meetings that take priority, reading a book for professional growth or leisure, and right down to scheduling in a nap. No matter what tickles your fancy, I can say that teachers are usually passionate about teaching and assisting students in their learning journey. The love of it all feels like a marriage and certainly an investment. it is challenging not to lose sight of oneself in the chaos of it all but I am so glad that I did not take this vow alone.
In April 2016, 5 educators: Sarah Thomas, Valerie Lewis, Knikole Taylor, Toutoule Ntoya, and Derek Larson (connected through the our EduMatch voxer group) sat around trying to convince ourselves that we had a life outside of school and were “normal” humans, despite what society thought. Our love of photography, culinary, music, sewing, the outdoors and great lyricists in the hip hop world affirmed that we were more than educators–we were HUMAN! We were so LIT on the idea that the world needed to see us in a different light. Indeed, teachers were cool and how awesome it would be to share those stories with the world.
Where and when will we show them (as though it was a special request)?
We all lived in different parts of the country so being on screen together from multiple devices would prove to be quite a challenge. BUT if we could “pass the scope”to one another then we had a shot. Periscope would be our stage and this is how it grew publicly.
This smack talking grew into a community of 80+ members of which about 1/4 hold it down religiously every 3rd Thursday of every month. This community is close knit and encouraging especially to those in education but welcomes other professional industries to join us in amplify goodness despite their level of expertise in streaming.
Where We Are Now
Two years later, we must confess that we truly are married to education. Our scopes are not a showcase of our talents or passions but a lens on our love for teaching. We are the experts in the room that lend our voice, truth, network partnerships, best instructional practices, and experiences to a broader audience. These stories often turn out to be unique or very shockingly relatable to our viewers. We share our pass-ion one scope at a time in a monthly 5-15 minute window of time. Makisha Rogers mentioned that we are a sort of pop-up PD on screen that can be viewed live in real time or whenever you can find the best moment to watch. We are a community that unselfishly seeks to amplify the goodness of the whole! Today, we are still on screen every 3rd Thursday across the country and globe.
Where We Are Going
In Summer 2017, we offered a unique perspective at one of the largest edtech conferences —ISTE Conference in host city San Antonio, TX. The outpouring of thanks from tens of hundreds of viewers pushed us into the realm of offering this service to conferences more frequently. The power of the many feet on the ground with a strategic plan has helped us realize our mission which is to amplify the stories of those that may often feel muted within their own buildings. We are also able to magnify the idea that the power of conferences is in the connection of the attendees.
Therefore, this year—we are back for ISTE18 and will cover Badge Summit, EduMatch Meetup, keynote/featured speakers, EdTech Karaoke, workshops, poster sessions, playgrounds, the famed Ignite sessions, exhibitor hall vendors, those who seek refuge in the blogger’s cafe, social gatherings, Coffee Edu, participant take aways and more.
Our craft is continuously improving through the use of OBS, Periscope Producer, and quality equipment. We are taking this thing seriously. We are organizing regional teams that can cover EdCamps, unconferences and other educational and tech events happening across the country in order to control the narrative of education through the sponsorship of leading companies and organizations. If you are interested in being part of this team then please reach out to us on Twitter or visit our site. We continue to aim to deliver authentic and meaningful scopes fashioned around creative topic themes monthly. O what a celebration it will be when we can fill every 15 minute interval timeslot from sun up to sundown!
Since our initial founding members, the community has gained some truly talented and committed members like Brian Smith, Claudio Zavala, Stacy Lovdahl, Amy Storer, Jacqueline Rose, and Dan Kreiness that make this community run through graphic design, learning opportunities, and planning ahead. There are so many more individuals to shout out individually because they scope when they can and support the community by amplifying its work. We do not take any of their contributions or support for granted. Thank you for your belief in this work and being part of our PLN!
This is a powerful community and we appreciate the encouragement to learn beyond the walls of the classroom.
You can find out more about our community by visiting www.passthescopeEDU.com (site built by Brian Smith) and share your passion for learning.