Coffee.Connections.Conversations: How to Host a #CoffeeEDU event
Not too long ago, I read a blog post about creating informal opportunities for educators to come together to discuss topics related to teaching and learning through the concept of a #CoffeeEDU. Aligned to the idea of an EdCamp/Uncoference, the goal of a #CoffeeEDU is to provide impromptu and conversational learning opportunities in a short amount of time. #CoffeeEDU events are limited to 1 hour.
I set out with the support of our district 1:1 Professional Learning sub-committee to launch our first #CoffeeEDU. Creating a plan for a #CoffeeEDU event is as easy as:
- Setting a date and time
- Establishing a location
- Communicating and sharing the event with other educators
- Connecting and conversing at the event
Some optional details to assist in creating a successful event can include:
- A personalized logo to spread the message. I used Canva to create the one below
- Create signage and guidelines to display at the conversation tables. I pulled the guidelines from the CoffeeEDU site to give direction for conversations and connections.
- Conversations and topics should be participant driven as they are in an EdCamp or Unconference, but to give direction and start some conversations off, create Table Talk Cards. I pulled questions from of my favorite professional books to guide the conversations and printed them on strips and laminated them. Books I used as a reference for questions included, “Kids Deserve It,” “Shift This,” and “Innovator’s Mindset.”
- Give-a-Ways! I solicited copies of books and gift certificates from a local pizza place to award as raffle prizes.
- A hashtag! Be sure to share it at the event and follow the tweets and reflections!
- A sign-in sheet or digital platform to collect participant’s information so you can follow up with an email or tweet.
- A digital badge to award to attendees following their participation. I used Credly to create a digital badge and the platform also allows you to issue ‘credit’ to participants easily and efficiently.
- A sticker to give to attendees for their electronic device with the logo or image from the event. I had 2 inch decals made at our local printing store quickly.
You can view these documents below as well.