I Love Chile News


Edcamp to Return to Chile in Santiago, Calbuco and Coyhaique

Edcamp to Return to Chile in Santiago, Calbuco and Coyhaique
February 08
05:00 2013

After a successful debut in Santiago in 2012, the Edcamp event is expanding in 2013. With extra venues and extra sponsors, the event looks to connect more and more of Chile’s teachers.

SANTIAGO — Led by the enigmatic Thomas Baker, the Edcamp event arrived in Chile, just the second outside of North America. The Edcamp movement is growing rapidly, with a free exchange of knowledge between educators the basis of the event. Baker lamented to I Love Chile that there is a mentality in Chile of keeping your knowledge to yourself.

“If you could theoretically get that sharing of ideas within the profession, the level of teaching of English in the country, or any other subject for that matter, would rise dramatically. It’s there, it could freely happen, but it’s something that would take a long, long time to change the mindset of guarding what you know as a jealous secret, and to change the attitude. I think Edcamp was a first step in getting that happening,” the education innovator said in an interview with I Love Chile after the first event.

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Professor Thomas Baker gets Edcamp Santiago 2012 underway. Photo by Dan Brewington

Baker believes that English has a huge role to play in lifting Chile. He believes that if initiatives from the Ministry of Education are matched with grass-roots efforts from teachers themselves, “The chances are good that eventually students at all levels, public and private, will have access to a tool that will eventually lead to a more prosperous future for themselves, and for the country.”

He is not alone in this thought. Australian Tony McKay, who chaired the Innovative Learning Environments conference in Santiago earlier in the year told I Love Chile, “Given the fact that English will continue to be a dominant language, as a young person, if you want to contribute to your own future, think about how you can be entrepreneurial, how you can create your own opportunities, not simply rely on others to provide work, having multiple languages is a non-negotiable skill.”

The conference was a joint initiative between the OECD and Chile’s Ministry of Education. At the conference, German education expert Andreas Schleicher spoke with I Love Chile about events like Edcamp and other gatherings of educators.

“It is very important to provide opportunities for teachers to collaborate. In Singapore, teachers have 100 hours every year where they work together at the National Institute of Education. These are very important occasions to think with other teachers how to move on as a professional,” he said.

After gathering educators from throughout Chile for the 2012 event, Edcamp is spreading in 2013. Participants in the south have the opportunity to attend in Calbuco and Coyhaique. All of the conferences will link together on Skype, as well as connecting with Edcamp Columbus.

Among the prizes on offer in the raffle is a scholarship to attend a Master’s Program at the University of Southern California. Among the other sponsors are the Ministry of Education’s English Opens Doors programs as well as online learning platform etutor.tv, along with many other education related businesses and organizations.

For more information about the event, head to the Edcamp Santiago blog page, which gives regularly updates on the Edcamp events as well as education news from around the world.


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Daniel Boyle is an Australian living in Santiago. Daniel’s main interests are sports, music and travel. He has a degree in Sports Management and is completing a Master of Arts (Writing). Daniel plays the sport of Freestyle Footbag and is hoping to spread it through Chile. In 2013 Daniel was granted a Start-Up Chile grant.
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