Last year was my first NERDCAMP for teachers! I did a post on the camp which I am reposting here since camp is only a week away and I am excited. I added some tips to my previous post which are added throughout this post below. Hope to meet you at NERD CAMP!!!
I can’t imagine teaching without a TEACHER BATTERY recharge. When I say recharge I mean some time off from the students to reflect and plan and get ready for a new year. I also mean being with people who share the passion of the job of educating little minds as much as I do. I really could not do the job of teaching without the well needed breaks (although I and most teachers work through breaks – just without students around us). Plus, to further spark my teacher battery, I need colleagues and educators around me that love this job as much as I do. Teachers who see the positive of what we do over the negative. Teacher pals that just get it!
Summer is here… so I am recharging. Creating new things for my classroom and for my new students is a part of that recharge for me. Each year I think this will be the best one yet. Another recharge for me is being around education even when I am off. So, six of my favorite peeps and I drove on our own dime to Michigan for two days of a teacher recharge. Five hours of planning out the year in my car with two great colleagues and hours of Professional Development at Nerd Camp!
The Nerd Camp Website explains Nerd Camp in more detail…. However, here is my spin on what it is…
Two days of Professional Development for K – 8 ELA Teachers who understand that teaching reading is about helping children find the joy of reading. Children’s authors galore and experts of various K-8 topics coming together to help educators reach their students hearts and minds. Again, that is my feeling from the event – Click here to read the website!
The opening of camp starts with seven minute inspiring “Ted-Like Talks” from various children’s authors and educators of ELA. It made me laugh. It made me cry and it made me glad to be an educator.
Then, you are off to attend sessions. If you click here can see some of what I saw last year. This year (2019) I am super excited about the released schedule which you can view by clicking here.
At the end of Day One, many, many authors gift their books to you and spend time signing copies. You can see Dav Pilkey, author of Captain Underpants below. What a kind, sweet, and giving man. To be honest…. he was not what I expected. Just read the post on the Book Bug Facebook page to get a look at his character!!!
If you ever get the change try a NERDCAMP as a way to recharge that teacher battery! What do you do in the summer to recharge?
Here are my NERD CAMP TIPS for Day one and Day 2
1.) Follow the Nerd Camp Facebook page – click here!
2.) Read over the schedule and highlight what you want to see… You can click here to see the 2019 schedule.
Bring a hard copy to camp!
3.) Some people bring computers for notes. I prefer my phone and a notepad. I take a ton of pictures of things presented or ideas I may see. Last year I went to a talk on day two by Jillian Fine Heise on #classroombookaday and she had great slides with tons of books you could use as Read-Alouds. I loaded some right into my Amazon cart or I took a picture of her slides to look at later. She has a Facebook Page you can join by clicking here. So camera, phone, computer, notepad – How will you take it all in??? Bring chargers or bricks. My phone battery got pretty sucked dry from all the activity!
4.) I bring a jacket/sweater I can use if needed. I was pretty comfortable with a jacket, shorts, and T-shirt.
5.) Dress is casual. You see lots of Nerd Camp Shirts and Teacher Shirts!
6.) Authors will sign books. I bring a few I already have and I of course buy a few while I am there. Often authors will give out copies at the end of day 1 too. So I usually add a few to my library too. I have them sign the books, but I saw a few people carrying around a matted frame where they had the authors sign that.
7.) Last year there were food trucks and a lunch break between sessions. Bring cash to purchase some yum! Also, they had a snack bar that sold coffee. However, I suggest you get you AM coffee before you get there. The lines were a little long in the am. I did get a coffee from the shop in the afternoon on Day 1 and there was not a wait!!!
8.) If there is a very popular author you want to see, bring patience. Some of the teachers I went with waited in line to meet Dav Pilkey and it took a really long time (they were happy they did it). I choose to go to the shorter lines. I really did not have a plan since I did not know what to expect. This year, I have highlighted the authors I would really like to meet and I will try to focus on them.
9.) I wrote my name and social media tags out for many people last year. I think this year I will bring some type of printed out card with all of that on there. That way I can hand that to them… Be ready to share your social media!
10.) Smile, relax, and soak in all the good teacher vibes!