GIVING often means RECEIVING
Every time we have shared at EdTechTeam Summits, it is extremely gratifying to know that we are sharing and helping other educators and their students. There is often an invisible light bulb that turns on, and you know they are imagining the possibilities in their own classrooms/schools. You don’t always see the fruits of your sharing, but you just trust that somebody will take that small seed of learning and turn it into something wonderful for the students.
In September, we were honoured to present just south of Edmonton, Alberta at the Nipisihkopahk Custom Summit with the Nipisihkopahk Education Authority. In Canada, our indigenous groups have their own Education Authorities (similar to a district), and a team of us had the opportunity to share our expertise with the Samson Cree Nation. We shared about using GSuite tools for productivity and teaching, design thinking, Geo tools, 360 images and more!
Little did we know, what we received from our fellow educators, far exceeded the little we had to offer. From the moment we entered the community, we were welcomed with the open arms of a loving family. We were blessed by the generosity of the community who prayed over the event and shared their culture and their ceremonies. But most precious of all were the stories that were shared with us: Stories of loss, but also of hope; Tales of struggle, but also of triumph; Examples of frustration, but also of forgiveness. Our eyes were opened briefly to their perspective, their journeys, and their conviction for the students and families that they serve.
What a privilege to give, but also to receive. Our hearts are full.
STORIES create CONNECTIONS
As we began greeting the attendees signing in at Nipisihkopahk Secondary School we knew this custom summit would be more than a day of learning; it would also be a day of experiences and connections. We were welcomed into this wonderful learning community with smiles and handshakes, and while we shared the power of GSuite and EdTech tools with them, the educators of the Nipisihkopahk Education Authority shared the story of their people and their community with us.
The passion these educators have for their students was evident in the excitement they shared in learning new ways to integrate technology into their classrooms. They talked excitedly about using the tools in their lessons to support student learning, and about growing and building their learning networks. Most importantly, however, they shared hopes for their students’ futures and talked about the challenges and struggles we all face as educators, as well as those that were unique to their own classrooms. Those stories created connections.
When we gathered together as a community to share a meal, we were humbled to hear the story of the Samson Cree Nation’s traditional dance and the importance of dance to their people. We were honoured with the privilege of hearing the stories of just a few of the dancers and of experiencing the pride they felt in sharing their culture with us. It was an empowering celebration and a truly inspiring day that spoke to the power of bringing traditional culture and new ways of learning together to create connections and share experiences.
[themify_button bgcolor=”blue” link=”https://www.edtechteam.com/summits/”]Share your own story at a Summit near you![/themify_button]