Nowhere but JEDcamp!

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Yes, it’s scary – going to a conference where, well, you’re not sure exactly what’s going to be discussed. I hear those questions frequently: “who are the speakers?,” “what breakout sessions are there?,” “what’s the theme?”

That’s part of the beauty of JEDcamp, though — the fact that nothing is predetermined, and it’s all up to the participants to decide what the afternoon will look like. And, if it’s anything like last year, it will be amazing!

Posting sessions at JEDcamp Midwest 2013
Posting sessions at JEDcamp Midwest 2013

Some of last year’s topics include:

  • What makes “Jewish Values” unique? Or are they unique?
  • Authentic/meaningful experiences to promote Tikun Olam – experiences that do more than just make kids feel good.
  • Google Apps for Education
  • iPad use in Hebrew
  • How can we impact our classrooms and students with genuine “Kavod”

C’mon! Where can you find stuff like this? Nowhere but JEDcamp!

More reasons to attend JEDcamp Midwest!

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  • Awesome swag from Edutopia! We’ll be raffling off water bottles and lunch bags!
  • Free tablet styluses for the first thirty attendees!

Join us for a unique “unconference” experience on October 19th!

Reasons to Attend JEDcamp Midwest

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  1. If your institution sends five or more people (everyone must register in advance, check in by 1:00 pm and stay through the program), your school or organization will receive an iPad Mini.
  2. Want to share your skills or teach something to your colleagues? No problem!
  3. All attendees will receive an awesome giveaway that you may or may not use all winter (hint: we hope you don’t need it).
  4. Ideas galore!
  5. It’s a great networking opportunity.
  6. This is professional development created by you!
  7. Free lunch!
  8. Make new friends and reconnect with old ones.
  9. Door prizes! Free tablet styluses (styli?) for the first 30 attendees.
  10. No travel or housing expense. Well, no expense at all!

Registration site is live!

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Sign up for JEDcamp today! Visit our EventBrite site to register!

We’re back…

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Or at least we will be! Thanks in part to a grant from the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago, the second JEDcamp Midwest will be held on October 19th at Solomon Schechter Day School from noon until 4:00 pm. Like last year, registration is free and includes a Kosher lunch.

Want to to get involved in planning and marketing this awesome event? Let us know in the comment area.

See you then!

JEDcamp Midwest a Success!

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Creating the sessions board
Creating the sessions board

The evaluations are starting to roll in and it appears that JEDcamp Midwest was a fabulous first step in what we hope will become an annual event. There’s that moment, when I plan an event, when people begin to arrive that I start to panic… “OMG… they’re really here…” Well, they registered, they came, they participated and they got something out of it!

Our last session of the day was pretty much an informal evaluation and a chance to generate some ideas for the next time. There was a good assortment of people at that session including Conservative and Orthodox day school teachers, Reform religious school principals, and JEDcamp committee members. We talked about how JEDcamp can connect the very distinct silos in Chicago and give us a chance to share with one another. We talked about potential venues that would appeal to the greatest number of people from every geographic area, all movements and teaching settings.


Some of the take aways were:

1. An hour was too long for some sessions, but we worried that if we only allocated thirty minutes, it wouldn’t have been long enough. A possible solution would be to have sessions start at both the hour and the half hour, but stagger the rooms so that if a session ran for more than thirty minutes it would be okay.


2. Start after lunch so religious school teachers could participate fully. My concern with that is that I  worry that, after they’ve taught all morning, religious school teachers will still bail at 2:00. We talked about finding a time in August before religious school begins, but those Sundays are precious to day school teachers. This is a tough one.

3. We tried to come up with some kind of track system where people could designate if the topic they’re posing is (a) a conversation they want to have or (b) a skill they want to share. We agreed that both are critical, but that we’d like to have a way to determine that.

Overall, though, the day was a success and we’re proud of what we accomplished.


Session schedule – what we ended up offering