Last week I had the opportunity to present and run a hands-on SAM Animation workshop at Yale with our partner Kaplan Early Learning. It was a timely event with October celebrated as Connected Educator Month, considering we were connecting through education technology across international waters!
The event itself was the kickoff to a Yale initiative of migrating US-based early childhood curricula and technology to meet the needs of the Chinese culture. Top CEO’s from over 30 different early learning centers across China were invited to deep dive into a number of Kaplan Early Learning’s core curricula and innovative products that would eventually be integrated into the China-based centers.
While I have presented with translators before – in both Mexico and Macedonia – that was years ago and with LEGO robotics hands-on challenges. This was my first experience with a fully translated SAM Animation workshop, and I must say one of the most fun/rewarding presentations I’ve ever done.
The simplicity of the software and universal understanding of storytelling both contributed to the overall success of the workshop. Sure there were often awkward hand-wavings in an attempt to ask or answer a “how-to” question, but for the most part, the dynamics of the group interacted much as classrooms and schools do… or what we’d like to see them do. A handful of the participants would figure something out, and jump up to help another group…connecting without hesitation.
Whether it’s across the same room, across the country through social media channels, or across the world through efforts similar to Yale’s program, we continue to celebrate connected educator month. Share what you’ve recently learned and be open to others sharing their discoveries. That’s what learning, inspiration, and connectedness are all about!
What ways do you feel most connected with your colleagues?