"We are living a public life on a global stage, the ones who can express themselves best, will be heard." -Laura Hill, Author The Great Story World Mix-Up, co-creator #whatisschool

Read the books I write with my children.

Friday, September 12, 2014

If you missed EDCampLI…

Saturday I attended my first EDCamp, which was held in my own backyard on Long Island. 

Growing up on Long Island is a real experience.  From it’s humble clam digger roots to the mansions and millionaires of the Hamptons, miles of white sand that make the pristine beaches of Fire Island, and orchard upon orchard of grapes where some of the best wines in the world are produced, there is really something for everyone.

 Fire Island 

If you don’t know where Long Island is, let me clue you in. Long Island juts off the east end of NYC and has long been a mecca for artists, innovators, the rich and famous boasting residents like Jackson Pollack, Teddy Roosevelt, Charles Lindbergh, Walt Whitman, Natalie Portman, Jerry Seinfeld, Eddie Murphy, Billy Joel, Calvin Klein, Francis Ford Coppala, and Steven Spielberg. Dee Snyder of Twisted Sister fame lives down the road.   It's the home of famous movie scenes like the "horse head" scene from the film The Godfather (1972), which was lensed at Sand’s Point Preserve; North By Northwest (1959) 
and The Manchurian Candidate (2004) at Old Westbury Gardens and Arthur (1981) staring Dudley Moore at Caumsett State Park.  

It is no wonder that education innovation has a hub here.

Entering EDCampLI, I was greeted by Carol Varsolona of NYEDChat who interviewed me (and many others!) about #whatisschool and the impact it is having on teachers and the way they thinking about education.  Change in education and integrating technology were the big themes of the day. 

Laura Hill #whatisschool interviewed by NYEDChat

Co-hosting NYEDChat was Tony Sinanis who also spoke of telling your school story by branding with technology and social media. Look for his book, The Power Of Branding, out now. Talks with Teachers creator Brian Sztabnik, who lives nearby and is just brilliant was there, along with Doc Sheilah, who presented a talk title “What does your Vox say?” And the list goes on. Tom Whitby, Gwen Pescatore, Dan McCabe and even Starr Sackstien showed up to share their knowledge with packed rooms of educators. It was truly a day of learning and connecting.

Laura Hill #whatisschool and Tony
Sinanis on branding your sch
So if you have a chance and there’s an edcamp near you, why not go!  It got me revved up to do some spectacular author talks on the Great Story World Mix-Up series I write with my daughters and inspired me to share more widely my ideas on the shift needed in teaching to prepare students for a technology based workforce in a #whatisschool lecture series.

The organizers are amazing and you never know who you will bump into. Innovative like-minded educators are right next door, take the leap and head out to an EDCamp, you've got so much to gain and nothing to lose!


Laura Hill #whatisschool and
Doc Sheilah on Voxing

Original Post: Excited To Go To EdCampLI

This weekend Long Island is hosting it’s first EdCamp, Saturday, September 13 and it couldn’t come at a better time!  Long Island is home to a wealth of educators, educational institutions and students of many faces, all poised and ready to use and infuse the system with new models of educational technology and methodology.  What better way to network, share ideas and experiences than a face-to-face meeting with people you’ve been speaking to all along!  

My question to you going into this weekend is what do you expect to get out of it? 

I know my goals are simple; I connected on Twitter to better understand what educators are experiencing in order to add direction to my in-school author talks and workshops, to share my insights on how education is changing to meet the needs of students entering a communications based economy with #whatisschool and to enrich my own children’s education by understanding the opportunities available. 

What I hope to get out of EdCampLI is a deeper enrichment and a connection to educators who are striving towards the same goals, right here in my own backyard.

I hope if you see me you will stop and say hi, introduce yourself and let me know how I can help you, I’ll do the same!  It will be a fantastic day; I hope to make it as meaningful as possible and to see you all there.



  1. I enjoyed your post Laura. Yes, #EdCampLI will be a wonderful meet-up to renew acquaintances and makes new ones with educators on Long Island. See you there.

    1. Hi Carol, it's going to be a really good time. Just spoke to the organizers, I am going to present a #whatisschool session! So excited.

  2. Wow... What a great post! Looking forward to seeing you Saturday!

    1. Hi Don, Great speaking with you yesterday, excited for edcampLI. i will look for you there.

  3. Laura, your post had a narrative flavor that would draw readers in with a glimpse of Long Island and then onto innovative ideas flowing from our hub. Great-spread your post around as I will too.


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