Well, where do I begin?! This was the week that was #RTCFever. On Tuesday, we had our official launch of North Tyneside Learning Trust’s Apple Regional Training Centre. We welcomed over 80 people to Stephenson Memorial Primary School, where the RTC is based, for a 4 hour event which culminated in a fabulous TeachMeet at the end of the day. Stephenson Memorial were fabulous and truly embraced the #RTCFever by creating a special version of their school logo for the occasion, decorating their school in 70s style and the fabulous staff also immersed themselves in the day by dressing up in retro 70s style clothing.
I have never organised an event like this before and couldn’t have done it without Lynsey, Julie, Mark (who I will get to later) and Emma. The RTC looked great with it’s disco ball and vinyls hanging from the ceiling and having colour coordinated lanyards for different parts of the day helped to make the day go as smoothly as it could.
As part of the main event, visitors were treated to a tour of Stephenson Memorial (hosted by SMPS’ very own Digital Leaders), time in the Market Place where a number of businesses had stalls and a 30 minute ‘inspiration’ session (which truly was inspirational) with @ICTEvangelist, Mark Anderson. At 4pm, we welcomed more visitors to hear from Jennifer Marshall, our Keynote Speaker from Apple and then after refreshments (an array of Dominos Pizzas!), we turned Mark Anderson, our amazing compere, who managed our first ever #RTCFever TeachMeet. We had some amazing speakers from local schools, including Richard Ludlow and Paul Tullock from Richardson Dees who presented at this TeachMeet for the first time and did an amazing job, speakers from further afield including Simon McLoughlin, Colin Grimes, Paul Leedham and Martin Bailey. Carol Allen from North Tyneside also rushed to join us from a twilight session (Thanks Carol) and the Churchill Community College Digital Leaders also presented to a jam packed hall.
Feedback is still coming in but has been overwhelmingly positive. I felt very privileged to be part of Tuesday and to see all of the wonderful work that is going on in North Tyneside in terms of eLearning.
However, the highlight of the 2 days for me was working with Mark Anderson. Mark very kindly offered to join us for the launch and the following day and I was in awe. It was one of those surreal moments where you follow someone on Twitter and think they are fabulous but have never actually met them in person (I had a similar moment at the Animate2Educate conference with Lee Parkinson) but Mark was fabulous. The following day I had the opportunity to work with Mark, looking at a strategic view for the RTC for next year before we were joined in the afternoon by 7 North Tyneside Learning Trust Schools for a Digital Leader Inspiration Session.
It was fabulous to work with someone ‘on my wavelength’ and plan so many exciting things! The conversations we had on the Wednesday have inspired this blog and some of the aspects to this – namely the App Top Trumps section which leads from an impromptu #AppOff that morning where we were sharing apps and trying to out-app each other!
Another project that came out of Wednesday’s work was the North Tyneside Learning Trust Digital Leader Cluster Group, a group of 7 schools who met to discuss how to move things forward in their schools. It was again a privilege for me to work with these schools and generate so many ideas as to how we can take this work forward in the Trust.
So, a fabulous week that I enjoyed so much – I liken myself sometimes to Tigger as I can get very bouncy when I get so excited and enthusiastic but I believe that even Eeyore would’ve been inspired this week with the experiences that I have had been part of this week! Lots of work now to do, but so many exciting opportunities are ahead, and I can’t WAIT to get started!