Not Quite Lennon and McCartney: The Synergy of PLN Collaboration

For this particular blog, I am not aspiring that I am anywhere near the genius of Lennon and McCartney. I love The Beatles and I stand as an unabashed fan. If I had a portion of the musical talent of two of the greatest songwriting partners of all-time, then chances are that I would not be typing these words. More than likely, I am sitting at a piano playing “Live and Let Die” or “Band on the Run.”

I am fortunate to host a weekly Twitter Chat entitled #EdBeat. The ethos of #EdBeat is simple: an inclusive, positive chat for all educators. #EdBeat has been in existence for a few months and I have been honored to grow my PLN on Twitter. I stand in awe of the many educators from which I have had the opportunity to learn. Each tweet can be a pathway to many insights, connections and collaborations. This particular mindset is the fuel for #EdBeat.

One of the early pieces of #EdBeat was to have a guest host to assist in moderating. I believe that having a collaborator for Twitter Chat is both fun and enlightening. It also increases the inclusion factor as well. There are many incredibly inspirational voices with whom I have the chance to collaborate. Being someone who defaults to wallflower status in social occasions, I am grateful for the personal and sincere connections that have been formed with so many #EduHeroes. Standing in the same virtual room with PLNs from #Read4Fun to #LeadupNow has given me excuse to park on the dance floor.

One episode of #EdBeat earlier this summer was guest hosted by Natalie Krayenvenger. Natalie and I had connected in earlier chats and tweets. Natalie is a self-described “Sherpa of Learning…” She is upbeat, creative and insightful. I thought that Natalie was an ideal guest moderator for #EdBeat. Even though, it was Natalie’s first time moderating a chat, she was a natural. The week leading up to our chat was fun, engaging and highly creative. Our Voxer Chats soon honed in our mutual love for Music. Connecting with Natalie was like “Hittin’ the Note” with a fellow musician or band mate during an extended jam session.

I was having so much fun with Natalie that I worked up the courage to ask her to return to #EdBeat for the following week. Natalie quickly agreed and then we launched into other free-form jam session of collaboration. Afterwards, I worked up the courage again to ask if Natalie would work with me as a permanent co-host for #EdBeat. The collaborative synergy was so evident and we decided that our momentum was too positive to just let it drift into the Twitter ether.

#EdBeat has been enhanced due to Natalie’s strong sense of growth mindset and collaboration. We have a shared vision for creativity, collaboration and connectedness. Natalie has made me a better educator and communicator. I look forward to our future projects together with #EdBeat.

I would not say that Natalie and me are akin to Lennon and McCartney. Their creative dynamic is world-changing and impactful. I do contend that the synergy those musicians had is similar anyone who has found a collaborator. Think hard enough and my guess is that there is respective Lennon to your McCartney in your schoolhouse or PLN. There is much synergy to be discovered when a connection is made via a PLN, Ed Camp, Book Study or CoffeeEdu. Somewhere your version of “Sgt. Pepper” is waiting to be created.

Both Natalie and I welcome any one to join our band in #EdBeat. We welcome ideas, collaborators and dreams.


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