Professional Development Opinion

Try a Voxer Book Group for Summer PD

By Starr Sackstein — June 21, 2016 1 min read
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Summer is a time to recharge and get excited for the upcoming school year.

If you’re anything like me, you don’t do complete relaxation really well and are always looking for ways to keep yourself active and learning.

Along with doing some writing this summer and attending some free events or speaking at conferences, I’m trying out my first Voxer book group.

(Now, full disclosure here, I was invited to the group because they’re using my book, Hacking Assessment and offered me a chance to be a part of the conversation.)

So far I’m really enjoying the way Ted Huff is moderating the group. At first he floated the idea out there in the Twittersphere and saw who was interested. He set a date and then started adding folks to the Voxer group.

Usually, congested Voxer groups are overwhelming for me, but this one is going at a nice pace and has a good focus.

Once everyone was added to the group, we were asked to introduce ourselves and share what we hoped to get out of the group. Each person is coming to the experience in a different place and with differing expectations. As the author of the book, listening to what they say is interesting for me as it is valuable feedback, but also allows me to engage with them about questions they have and potentially help them solve problems if they plan to give up grades

The plan is to through the whole book over five weeks, taking two chapters a week. So far we two questions were dropped in the first day, first about our existing grading policies within our schools and then one specific to the book.

Each person in the group, listens and participates at their own pace and then the moderator synthesizes what is being said, responds where appropriate and asks clarifying questions where needed. The participants are only expected to read 2 chapters a week, which is a comfortable/digestible pace.

So if you’re looking for a great way to push your learning and to collaborate with folks who may not be close by, Voxer is a great technology solution to bridge the gap and time. Folks can contribute from all over the world and the stories and sharing can really add depth the learning from the text. Plus there is something actionable about being accountable to a group that makes the reading happen.

What’s on your must read list this summer? Would you consider doing a Voxer book study? If you’ve done one before, share your experience.


The opinions expressed in Work in Progress are strictly those of the author(s) and do not reflect the opinions or endorsement of Editorial Projects in Education, or any of its publications.