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Liven up your Class or your Meetings

Liven up your Class or your Meetings

Try something new in your next class or staff meeting. In the spirit of open source learning, we should capitalize on the success of what is known in technology workshops as a smackdown. Originally smackdowns happened in the realm of entertainment wrestling. A smackdown is defined by Merriam and Webster as a confrontation between rivals or competitors.

In the world of technology conferences, a smackdown is a session dedicated to volunteers from the audience sharing the projector and 2 minutes to explain the latest web 2.0 tool and how it is used in a classroom, a meeting, a personal learning network.

As one participant said, “it is a great way to attend a session, you don’t have to sit through a potentially boring session because the presenter changes every two minutes.” My reasons for attending a smackdown are; I often have something to share, I get to meet some of my Twitter followers and the people I follow, and last but not least I get some very valuable tools to share with my peers and my students.

The latest smackdown I attended was at ATIA in Orlando at an Assistive Technology Conference. Thanks to Chris Bagaj for podcasting the session. I am sure he will be happy to share his podcast and blogwith you.

Take the smackdown idea to the next level. Take the smackdown into your classroom and have students share information in 30 seconds before moving on to the next person. Take the smackdown into your next staff meeting and have folks share an idea or program that is working for them. To begin with start out with a time limit for each person and an overall time limit during the meeting or class. How are you using the smackdown idea in your school?