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Python Education Summit - in its 7th year in 2019

Teachers, educators, and Pythonistas: come and share your projects, experiences, and tools of the trade in teaching coding and Python to your students. The Annual Python Education Summit is held at PyCon 2019, taking place on Thursday, May 2nd. Our call for proposals is open until January 3rd AoE, and we want to hear from you!

See https://us.pycon.org/2019/speaking/education-summit/ for more details and history about PyCon’s Education Summit.


In 2019, the Summit will have 2 sessions:

  1. Familiar from previous years, the morning session will be comprised of keynotes, talks, and lightning talks.
  2. New this year, the afternoon session will host mini-sprints
We invite you to submit proposals for both sessions.

What are Mini-Sprints?

We’re glad you asked because 2019 is the first time we are hosting them at the Education Summit. In short, they are collaborative small groups that are meant to create meaningful educational content.

Participants of the education summit will break out into groups to work on these mini sprints. All materials created during that afternoon will need to be released or made available under an open license.

For 2019, the theme for the mini-sprints will be Open Educational Resources (OER). Python community members may already know about much of the open source traditions within the software.  Open Educational Resources serve much the same purpose. Materials are published publicly and users are welcome to access and remix them. This allows students to save on the cost of textbooks, and instructors the opportunity to adapt a resource for their own need.

As a community of open source practitioners and educators, our skills are strongly aligned to make efforts like this benefit all.  As we make the argument for open source that it helps programmers develop and iterate faster, the same argument can be made that openly shared instructional materials can help educators respond faster and more consistently to the changes in the community.

Information to consider when proposing a mini-sprint

For the mini-sprints session we are looking for topics and activities that could benefit from some intensive in-person discussion and hands-on collaboration. Submit an idea for something you’d like to lead with a small group of people and work on for 1-2 hours. Our focus this year is on open educational resources (OER), materials which can be shared and adapted in the same spirit as the Python language itself. The proposals should describe the activities that will happen within the small groups.
Some topics may include:
  • Gathering best practices for teaching specific populations, tools, classroom styles, etc.
  • Drafting open educational content and resources (such as workbooks, exercises, teaching materials) for classroom use
  • Documenting active learning activities across age groups
  • Inventory and cataloging of Open Educational Resources online
These are not panels, birds of a feather, or un-conference sessions. Mini-sprint tracks should be designed to get a job done or complete the foundational exploration of a larger project.

As the proposer of the mini-sprint, you will be responsible for organizing what people work on during the sprint session. This includes a schedule of activities, identifying the skill sets needed for participants, and planning for how the project can continue on after the summit has completed.  You do not need to be an expert in the domain or task that you are proposing to be completed!

We urge anyone in this space to submit a proposal! You do not need to be an experienced speaker to apply!

Since this is the first time we are hosting mini-sprints, we want to let you know how they will be reviewed. The Education Summit organizers will be looking for the following things:
  • Alignment of the task with the education mission and appropriate scope for what can be accomplished in a mini-sprint context.  We are broadly open to all topics, but projects designed to benefit non-profit missions and open access materials will be given highest priority.
  • Description of the skills and interests needed from participants.  Remember that you’re going to have a room full of professional educators, plan on making use of that!
  • Clearly stated activities that should be completed within the sprint along with expected deliverables.
  • How do you expect this project to grow and be sustained over the next year? Imagine submitting a talk about this project for the 2020 Python Education Summit, what would you like to say about it?
The organizing committee will work with accepted sprint proposers to refine the tasks and may ask several conveners to work together if there are similar projects.

Information to consider when proposing a talk

What we look for in Education Summit talks are ideas, experiences, and best practices on how teachers and programmers have implemented instruction in their schools, communities, books, tutorials, and other educational places by using Python.
  • Have you implemented a program that you've been dying to talk about?
  • Have you tried something that failed but learned some great lessons that you can share?
  • Have you been successful implementing a particular program?

How to submit a talk or mini-sprint

  1. Submit via your dashboard at https://us.pycon.org/2019/dashboard
  2. In the submission form please indicate the submission type clearly in the beginning of the title  e.g. Talk: or Sprint:
In addition, we will have the much awaited Lightning Talks session! Lightning talks will be 5 minutes long, on a topic of interest to PyCon Education Summit attendees. It could be an education related project that you worked on, event that you participated in or tools/techniques you think other people will be interested in.

Sign-ups for lightning talks will be on the day of the event.


We hope to see you at the Education Summit in 2019 -  Hurry! January 3 is the submission deadline.


For more information about the summit, see: https://us.pycon.org/2019/speaking/education-summit


Contributing Authors: Meenal Pant and Elizabeth Wickes

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