Saturday, 1 August 2015
To Those Considering Attending TMC16
In a recent conversation, a teacher whom I respect greatly, said "Maybe one day I'll be brave enough to register for TMC". This is an amazing teacher, who has deservedly won every award possible, who gives workshops around the country and is among the kindest, nicest, most genuine people I have every met. How could TMC seem to intimidating to this person? I went to Twitter Math Camp for the first time in 2013, knowing no one, rooming with a complete stranger (who turned out to be lovely) and really not knowing how or if I really fit in with this community, so I understand the anxiety leading up to TMC, but I still went. I wonder if the community has grown so strong in the past few years, that it seems to be more intimidating. Well, let me shatter that for you. The teachers at TMC are the most welcoming and kind you could find anywhere. The teachers whose blogs we all read are down-to-earth people who are, just like you and me, trying to get better at what they do. They will sit down for a meal with you and give you a hug when you fix their tech issue. TMC is an experience - one that is at times overwhelming, but one that is always positive. There are times on Twitter when some express opinions that bash something that another teacher makes work really well in their classroom - I find this very unfortunate. In my three TMCs, I have heard none of this. It's just really positive. I have met so many great people through TMC - people that are now friends for life. I have connected with teachers who really push me out of my comfort zone and make me think about teaching in ways I would not have on my own. Meeting and having conversations with these people in real life really strengthens my on-line connections. It's much easier to jump into a Twitter conversation when you actually know someone in that conversation. It's about community (as Lisa said), and TMC strengthens your sense of belonging to this amazing MTBoS community we have. So I urge those of you who didn't make it to TMC15 to make plans to be at TMC16 - you will not regret it.