My story started from the true passion I have for transforming professional development from sit, get, and follow to professional learning with teachers at the core of the learning experience,  how it feels to be a learner, like kindergartners.  This year I was invited to participate in the new TED Masters Class, TED’s commitment to educators, and to ideas worth spreading. What would happen if every educator shared their best ideas with each other? And why aren’t they already? The TED Masters Class, a new partnership with ISTE, is 12 modules that take you on a journey of storytelling and crafting the story worth spreading.  The best part is class requires that you have a partner. Over the course of 3 months we worked on crafting our stories.

The Kindergarten Phenomena concept  occurred to me when I dropped my nephew off at school and watched as he and other kindergartners ran into the building toward the learning. I think all teachers should go on field trips to the primary school and observe the love, curious, inquisitive, playful nature of early learners. Then ask why do we not have that same love and excitement for professional learning as teachers?

The story began to unfold as I thought about my own learning experience as a teacher in several public schools and how I was able to transform the learning experiences for teachers in my role as Director of Innovation at String Theory Schools in Philadelphia. Over the course of a 3 year project, I worked closely with the administrative teams to design the learning experience for teachers for our Back to School days, for each 1/2 day throughout the school year and our 3 closing professional learning days plus professional learning for school administrators, because leaders are learner too.

My TED Talk was selected to share at the closing Keynote session at ISTE 2018. It was a life changing event to work with a TED Coach who encouraged me in slide design, in storytelling and was an incredible partner on the day I hit the big red dot on the main stage.

You can see my talk here

I am grateful to TED and ISTE for giving me the opportunity to share the Joy of Professional Learning and our story of teachers as super hero learners! Because we believe we can change the world just like kindergartners!

ISTE 2018 TED Talk