EdCamp Leadership Building PLN + PLC = PLF
by Wm Jackson
Educator, STEAM Advocate, EdCamp Organizer
Professional Learning Networks + Professional Learning Communities =
Professional Learning Families
The voices that help to manage EdCamp inspires collaboration and professional
development on a foundational level for educational professionals. To inspire and
engage teachers as professionals, embrace the humanity that is in each teacher,
to aspire and guide students beyond their perceived limitations of themselves and
of what others perceive them to have.
Sharing the dynamics of Professional Learning Communities, building and using
Professional Learning Networks and enhancing the importance of each because
it takes a village family to help raise and develop children; this is the Professional
Professional Learning Families where educators look beyond the profession to
see the value of a family structure in education. Each classroom, each school and
each community is a culture that must be managed to guide students and even
families step by step in the educational process. A holistic approach to learning
that inspires and even agitates teachers to do better.
Takeaways from 2017 EdCamp Leadership that had 8 counties represented.
a. Every behavior a student shows in not a consequence for discipline. Look
beyond the behavior to find the reason and situation for the actions.
b. Preserve your academic learning environment. Set the atmosphere for
respect, high expectations and building bridges for success and relationships.
c. Start using parents as a resource to help manage classroom management.
Always have something nice to say about all your students because they
deserve to feel safe and wanted in the classroom and school.
d. The importance of relevancy and the connection that all learning is important.
Learning is a life-long endeavor that should be taught along with why learning
e. Administration should be listening to the classroom teachers about how to
improve the school environment. Teachers should also feel valued and needed
for their passion, experience, intelligence, sacrifice and humanity as people
not robots or programs.
f. If teachers have something that works in the classroom they should be
encouraged to share it.
g. The environment of the school should support high levels of confidence in
every teacher and moral should be maintained at every opportunity. Every
person from teacher, custodian, office personnel, lunch room, etc should
feel valued and needed.
h. Teachers should be authentic and transparent, never be fake, rude or
sarcastic to students, parents or peer professionals.
i. Teachers should share what does not work and remember every lesson
is not for every student.
j. Consistency sends a message to students that they can trust you and
rely on you to be the same person all the time. Don’t go and get
“new” on them.
k. Teachers should communicate with parents consistently and invite
them into the classroom to watch and participate in learning.
l. Technology can bridge the gap between single parents, grandparents and
teachers if applied correctly
m. Teachers don’t assume your children’s parents are of the same educational
level. Just because your students’ parents speak Spanish do not assume
they can read Spanish. Just because your students’ parents or family are
professional and college educated they are providing
all the emotional and cognitive needs of their children.
n. Teachers take the time to read and comprehend your student’s academic
folders, drive their neighborhoods and look in the grocery stores in the
community to see their environment.
o. Before a teacher can teach they must build a relationship with their students.
p. Teachers must share their educational, social and behavior expectations
for their classroom and the school.
q. Teachers are responsible for building their classroom culture and the
administration is responsible for the school culture. They must work in unison
r. Teachers should let their students know their stories are important and
all learning should be purposeful.
s. Teachers should let their students know that they embrace and
t. Teachers should take a stand on student learning not just related
Teachers should have a homework assignment for their parents in the form
of a written assignment. Beginning the new school year ask your parents
to write in 1000 words or less what do they want
you to know as their child’s teacher to learn about their child.
“Open the doors for information exchanges early with parents.”
Comment shared at EdCamp Leadership, “students that are loved at home
come to school to be taught, and students that are not loved at home come
to school to be loved.”