How Simplicity, Spontaneity, and Surprises Make You Learning

Who Truly is Responsible for Our Children’s Education?

Only teachers, parents, school, or students?

How Do We Learn to be Responsible for Our Education?

After organizing and attending this event,

I think this changes my whole perspectives about who truly is responsible for our education and how we can make a difference to our education system.

EdCamp is basically unconference event where people who concern to our education discuss and share their perspectives.

This event was originally initiated by three teachers in Surabaya in July 4th, 2013. After being held for the second time in 2014, Laksmi, EdCampID founder in Indonesia challenged me and several volunteers in Jakarta to make EdCamp. I am  blessed to know Laksmi and EdCamp team in Surabaya because they are very helpful and generous. They provided clear guidelines, share relevant resources, support networking among EdCamp Jakarta Team.

Also, I must thank Twitter, WhastUp, Facebook, Google Hangout, Google Docs, and Gmail that had build strong relationship and collaboration to conduct this event. After connecting people from different regions in Jakarta with Social Media, we decided to arrange face to face meet up. It might be small number of persons (less than 10), but our passions, dreams, and commitments are bigger than you could imagine.


After meet-up, it’s surprising that many volunteers from Jakarta comes from non-educational professions. They were businessman, employee, freelance worker but they had total heart and dreams for better Indonesian education. I personally learn a lot from multiple perspectives they shared in the meetup.

It comes to preparation weeks for EdCampID Jakarta. I am very impressed to all Jakarta and Surabaya volunteers who were willing to accept responsibilities, provide support, and collaborate ideas and perspectives to prepare this event. To be honest, I am well planned teacher and sometimes I become so nervous preparing something. So, it kinda challenging for me to join in EdCamp.

EdCamp prep brings different feeling and experiences.

It has no schedule and speakers. It’s participant-driven. Potluck concept. No complicated registration and publication. We just announced the events using social media. We sent confimation email. We invited people to join and share their ideas on the day.

I learn being simple is enough to make changes.

I  learn how spontaneous, flexibility, and originality are important part of collaboration.

I learn surprising moments that filled with passion, commitment, and action is ingredients of innovation.

Simplicity, Spontaneity, and Surprise often becomes enemy to Event Organizer. It’s not happening at EdCamp!

These are the differences between EdCamp and Conferences

Then, August 23rd comes! We are super excited to meet one another.




For the first time, I met EdCamp Surabaya volunteers who came to Jakarta for EdCamp Face to Face. I met Laksmi who is the founder of EdCampID, mbak Iin and mbak Indri who also involved as founding members of EdCampID at Surabaya.  Initially, they explained the simplicity and spontaneous principle of this event. Well, I must admit sometimes being simple is very challenging, but it’s more effective.


Each participant comes and write their name on label and post the topic they want to discuss in post it. We began the kick off session that ae led by Laksmi. She first introduced EdCamp background, history, and programs. This brings a whole new perspectives of how we design our professional developments. She also shared EdCamp using this video:

After that, since there were only 18 people who attended this event, it’s easy to manage  we decided to the topics. According to the proposed discussion topics by the participants, we directly arranged two sessions in row after kick off session. In the first session, we would discuss online learning, the second session, we would discuss creative & critical thinking session. Each participants were free to come up and comment based on their interest of the topics.

Ibu Ikke, Jubilee School Curriculum Team shared there is a gap between facilitation and teacher’s quality even in big city, in Jakarta. Facility are everywhere but there is lack of teachers’ willingness to learn and change that brings the fear of technology in education. She shared many Indonesian teachers can’t use email properly. There is a clear need to force Indonesian teachers to learn technology soon. But How?


In line with Bu Ikke sharing, I shared this problem from different perspectives. Facilitation is there but many teachers are not ready because they lack of high quality professional development and training. This actually ‘force’ a ‘hunger’ teacher like me to design my own professional development. Firstly, I force myself to learn at Coursera, a high quality virtual professional development that are conducted by the Best universities in the world. Then, I challenged myself to utilize technology to empower students in my class by initiating TED Ed Club in my school. The passion doesn’t stop there, I am inviting teachers and all people who want to collaborate for education to design Teachers Professional Development Community such as EdCamp and Google Educator Group.


Deasi, Dian Harapan Teacher also shared the importance of digital literacy that help teachers to be more effective teachers. Using Schoology as LMS has become important elements of 21st century education. It might be challenging for the first time, but we need to humble ourselves


The sessions are continued by discussion by Donovan, Basilea School Founder, who shared the mentality of most Indonesian teachers that are focus on incentives, not the learning itself. In addition, he added that the lack of government appreciation and support to teacher’s lifelong learning lifestyle that makes teacher’s stuck. So, he challenged us how do we make our teachers learn?


This interesting points are added by Iin, Mathematic Fun Founder who questioned us how do we make all online and digital learning tools become relevant and down to earth to teachers who live in suburban and remote area?


Felix, a business consultant also shared his concern to our teacher’s and education quality compared to ASEAN countries. We might rethink how do we prepare our education and teachers to welcome ASEAN 2015 program where people from ASEAN could come to Indonesia more easily. Are we ready yet? There is no better ways than we force our teachers to be ready. It should comes to the top government, leaders in schools, and supervisors to be very strict in forcing teachers to upgrade their knowledge and skills in technology.


Ibu Meicky, UPH Teachers College lecturer add important aspects for improving teacher’s willingness to learn. After being forced, teachers need appreciation. Concrete recognition by their leaders seemed simple, but it boost teacher’s confidence to learn more. She also told us that teachers need to be proud of her learning lifestyle and shared this spirit to their students as well.  Make students know your passion because students actually know how to differentiate dilligent and lazy teachers in school.

Pak Fauzan, Dompet Duafa Team and Story Telling Expert, also shared his teachers’ training experiences in remote areas. He realized it is very difficult to build learning spirit among teachers but we indeed need to force and support teachers to learn.

Laksmi also shared the importance of being shameless to learn. Teachers should be hungry and craving for knowledge.


Herry, CEO of Eduqo (EdTech Portal) and also writer in IDTechinAsia shared the growth of EdTech local business in Indonesia that are needed to enrich and empower local business creators and users.He encouraged us to learn more about EdTech tools such as Kelase, Ruang Guru, Codemy, and many edtech business start up so that we could also engage in EdTech future growth in Indonesia. As one of the most populated country in the world, Indonesia is has big opportunity to improve their education quality distribution using local EdTech tools.


After all e-learning, online, and edtech session has been delivered, we arrived at the second session: Creativity & Critical Thinking Skills.


Pak Fauzan comes up with amazing story telling technique. He brought up simple tips about how to be good story teller. He emphasized the importance of being expressive to attract children. He told us that many children nowadays are more interested listening to media than story-telling. He argued that It’s time to get back children to the traditional story telling that inspire moral values that would challenge their creative thinking. He also simulated strategies to manage intonation, expression, tone, and stories to make children get the message of the story. Two thumbs up Pak Fauzan!


Before we close the session, we gave the opportunity for people who have not shared in front of the audience, to share their impressions and comments of this events. Many of them shared that this event has been such an inspiration. Even though they comes from multiple background, now they realize education is also their responsibility. It’s time to bridge a gap between school expectation and working expectation so that students would be ready for market place.

Finally, we closed the session by concluding the follows up of what we have learned in the session:

1. We need to send the conclusion and recommendation of what we’ve shared at EdCamp to Government, specifically, we plan to send it our vice-Governor, Ahok.

2. We would be open and available to organize another EdCamp in different place at Jakarta or at other cities in Indonesia.

3. EdCampID EdTech will be created by the collaboration of government sector and EdCamp volunteer. We target more people to come and join especially public policy makers and teachers.

At the end of the event, we also need to capture the pictures of excited 1st EdCampID Jakarta participants and volunteers!


That’s the end? Not yet. It seemed EdCamp sessions still continues in lunch sessions where everyone shared their background, passion, and learning experiences in group. I call it ‘never ending networking session’ with inspiring people!


So, back to to our first question: Who Truly is Responsible for Our Children’s Education? We all are responsible.

Well, as I said in my final words at EdCampID Jakarta, I believe that we’re all Divergent people, wait, Have you watched Divergent movie? If yes, you would understand my final message. We tend to divide people into specific group and we tend to care our own business and neglect others. This should not happen in our education because our education need divergent people who can see education from multiple perspectives.

“No matter where we come from, we are born from education,

Whoever you are, you are responsible to make a difference for our better future of education.”

Steven Sutantro

Then, to our second questions: How Do We Learn to be Responsible for Our Education?

By our many simple, spontaneous, and surprising moments that were born from the collaboration of volunteers and participants at EdCampID Jakarta.

Thank you to all volunteers and participants who have shared your ‘divergent’ perspectives for education.

Thank you for all simplicity, spontaneity, and surprise you all bring to EdCamp.

I personally believe the real implementation of EdCamp should happen after this when we encourage people to learn from one another to make a difference.

“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” –

Margaret Mead


Mind to join EdCamp? or Make one at your Hometown? Please feel free to contact me!

Be ready to be simple, spontaneous, and surprised at EdCamp!  Coz it will make you learning to make a difference for our education!

You may also like...

2 Responses

  1. Made Hery Santosa says:

    An inspiring piece. I’m sure we could learn a lot there. Still trying to have one in mine. Best to all!

  2. Nur Isnaini says:

    That’s very amazing.. How to join Edcamp?? Thanks..

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *