Yesterday, we held the first ever Project Learning Swap Meet 2013 Baltimore! For the last month and a half, I planned and planned and with the help of Bianca and Lee Hewes, the originators of this beautiful unconference, my husband Andy Hanes, my two incredibly supportive colleagues, Frannie Morrissey and Jennifer Robinson, I wouldn’t have been able to pull it off! The day began with a video message from Bianca and Jim. Their enthusiasm about PBL and mission was inspiring to say the least. 

Although we had a small number of participants (only 12), we had a great conversation about what we thought PBL was and what we knew it wasn’t. Everyone at the Meet were pretty new to PBL, but enthusiastic to learn more about it. After a short break, we gathered in a classroom to Skype with Suzie Boss! Suzie had just returned from a trip to Turkey at 2 am in the morning, Portland time. She generously woke up early in the morning just to Skype with us. This was such an incredible part of the day! Participants were able to ask her questions and get ideas, a lot of ideas, to use directly in their own classrooms. It was like a personal tutoring session about PBL from an expert! So, so cool!

Although some participants weren’t able to stay, we gave resources and offered our Edmodo group again as a space to share our PBL journey and also, most importantly, get and offer support. After that, we ate lunch and chatted about what we thought we wanted out of the rest of our day. We then helped participants form driving questions for their projects and plan a bit. I loved watching new connections happen between people and also watching new enthusiasm about PBL grow. 

A few of us have talked about doing a second PLSM14 in February or March but holding it on a weekday so that more people can attend. I look forward to sharing and growing from our new PLSM13 Baltimore community on Edmodo and hope it continues to grow and grow!


5 thoughts on “PLSMBaltimore

  1. It was a great learning and sharing experience for all of us. your passion and organizational skills and generous spirit created a professional growth opportunity for us all. I am eager to get started on my collaborative PBL with Colleen Hoban, and look forward to sharing and learning through our edmodo group and a second meet in early spring.

  2. Sounds like it was a very worthwhile day – I hope you will do it again so that I can be there! I think this is revolutionary work and the more teachers and students can connect and think beyond their schools the better!

  3. I loved the informal nature of this “un-conference.” Participants talked openly and shared ideas and resources with such a wonderful spirit of collaboration. Suzie Boss was an inspiration to all and augmented the work of the day so beautifully. Heidi’s enthusiasm for the topic was infectious and I know we all felt like we walked away with a stronger sense of what PBL is all about and how it applies to our work with students.

  4. Thanks for organizing…all of your hard work and efforts are truly appreciated! Meeting all of you was a delight and I am super excited to connect with Frannie and her class! PBL here I come!!!

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