Kami Connect Speaker Sessions | Laurie Guyon

Kami is a professional learning treasure trove. From the moment participants enter your room or logs into a virtual session, you’ll have them hooked and ready to learn in a matter of seconds! With every upload and new tool discovery, comes the opportunity to build an excited and engaged community within your group. 

Here’s how…

Keep it Fun

One of my favorite ways to get PD participants engaged is by bringing the fun right away! 

This can be through games, memes, or even ‘getting to know you’ posts.

All of these can be done within the Kami platform – it’s a great way to get participants right into the app and demonstrating their skills so you can sort your Power Users from those who need more support. Plus, easing in with a few laughs is a great way to start building that community vibe.

Here are a couple of my tried and true go-to’s:

  • Grid Games: For users familiar with Kami, this can be a powerful session, particularly to start with. For this activity, participants use the media tool to find a game piece. They then place their piece anywhere on the grid (other than the winning spot). Then, I ask prewritten questions and tell them if they get the question right, they can move a number of spots left, right, up, or down. When they get to the winning spot, we stop and celebrate the winner. 
  • Spark their Curiosity: Start by placing an image, headline, quote, or even a video in Kami. From there, ask your participants to explore the resources, think about how it relates to the topic, or have them ask questions. This can get your participants eager to learn more about the topic and build a safe space for exploration and curiosity.

Keep the ball rolling

Now that you’ve got your workshop participants talking, you want them to stay engaged and asking questions about your content.

There are many ways to do this:

  • Get Moving: Show images on Kami and have your participants find an object in their homes, or in the room. They then take photos of the objects and upload them into Kami. Then, have the participants discuss or write how their object relates to your session topic. (Be ready for a lot of laughs with this activity!)
  • Breakouts: Small groups or virtual breakouts are a great way for participants to share what they know while continuing to learn and explore. Use a template to make sure they have a place to jot down their ideas, share their resources, and ask questions.  
  • Get Creating: Whatever your topic is on, you want your participants to create something while they’re with you. That way, they can put into practice what they learn during your session and leave with a collection of activities to use in the classroom right away. 
  • Hands-On Activities: You can easily create hands-on activities in Kami. Some of my favorites are drag-and-drop activities. Create the ‘draggables’ either within Kami, or upload them as images. Then, create a chart and have your participants sort the images based on your desired learning outcomes.

Keep the feedback flowing

There are few EdTech tools that can offer a constant feedback loop like Kami can. We know how important it is for our students to reflect on their learning, ask questions, and get support from their teachers. The same applies to adults.

  • Progress Bars: For team meetings, it helps to have visuals that show the progress of projects within your classrooms. This simple graph can be used in groups or breakout settings to discuss what is working well or if support is needed. 
  • Choice Boards: As all Kami users know; offering voice and choice is super important. That’s why Kami makes it super easy to create choice boards using shape tools and adding links or videos – your participants can then work straight into these. Using the comment tool, you can give audio or video feedback on the work and monitor progress in real-time. 
  • Celebrate Everything: One of the most important things to do during a workshop or webinar is to keep the energy high and celebrate everything! Use stickers, audio and video to salute every win. On the other hand, always offer positive support to those struggling, and most importantly, keep smiling! 
  • Reflection: Always leave time for reflection at the end of every session. In Kami, you can add in a grid, like with the games, and have participants add text comments, video, or audio reflections on their process.

We’ve gone over many great tips and resources for keeping your participants engaged and high-spirited – but we’ve only really scratched the surface of what Kami can offer your PD sessions. 

Kami is a stellar EdTech tool for all aspects of learning; from in and out of the classroom with students, to adult professional learning.

I hope you’ve found the inspiration you need to take the next step with Kami in your day-to-day teaching!


Slides: kami.app/Kamify-your-PD

Speaker: Laurie Guyon is the Coordinator for Model Schools at BOCES in New York and a trainer with NYSCATE. She was named one of the  NextGen: Emerging EdTech Leaders for 2020.  Laurie is also on the leadership teams for ISTETEN, ISTESTEM, and ISTEDSN. She is passionate about helping others integrate technology into literacy. Laurie joined the Kami Heroes ambassador program in 2020.

Twitter: @smilelearning