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Work experience

Aug 2011Present

Second and Fourth Grade Teacher

Cranbrook Educational Community
  • Launched a Design Thinking cross-curricular, semester long project partnering with Detroit businesses
  • Serving as a member of the district's Technology Action Group to discuss and evaluate decisions made regarding new and current technology within the schools
  • Co-chaired the school-wide Innovation Committee
  • Piloting the district's 1:1 iPad initiative
  • Support fellow teachers with the integration on technology into their classroom by meaningful lessons that enhance the current pedagogy
  • Connect and collaborate with the school's parent organization to integrate imagination, creativity, and innovation into the classrooms with inspiration from Robot Garage and Lego
  • Skyped with local Michigan children's authors and arranged in class grade-level visits and read alouds
  • Partnered with the Early Childhood Center's Junior Kindergarten classroom to construct an interactive animal unit for science using iPad technology
Aug 2010Jun 2011

Instructional Coach

Madison School District
  • Facilitated Professional Development Workshops for the District: introduced effective teaching strategies, modeled cooperative learning structures for active engagement, organized pacing guides for semesters, and developed standards based assessment measures in alignment with Common Core Standards
  • Conducted in-depth Needs Analysis for Teacher and Student Relationships: integrated evidence-based programming, infused differentiated tools to match individual student deficits for intervention pieces, modeled scaffolding techniques for different learning styles, and trained others to understand, implement, and analyze progress monitoring data to inform re-teaching points and instruction
  • Collaborated with English Language Arts Department and Individual Teachers to Develop a Cohesive and Consistent Action Plan: constructed plans (based on research and from multiple points of data and various reliable assessment measures) for next steps for whole group instruction and for small group targeted instruction, incorporated technology as a tool to enhance instructional methodologies and student motivation, synthesizing, and engagement - ie: SMART Technologies (interactive white boards), iPod and iPad Technology, and Web 2.0 applications
  • Modeled Lessons: working individually with a teacher, we would plan a particular lesson together, he or she would observe the lesson being taught, and afterwards, we would meet to reflect and determine next-steps.  This explicit I Do, We Do, You Do approach not only works with students, but with coaching as well; we've found success with individuals taking ownership due to the collaborative nature of the system.
  • Created Sustainability: developed Personal Learning Networks, or Communities via: Twitter, Nings, Book Clubs and Studies, and by establishing a standards-aligned common scope and sequence for writing and for our core-reading program
Aug 2009Jun 2010

Literacy Intervention Specialist

Madison School District
  • Developed a literacy intervention curriculum for a newly offered intervention course, Literacy Workshop, and designed a scope and sequence document that incorporated evidence-based programs and interventions, including REWARDS
  • Established a data driven system in which utilized multiple assessments (NWEA, AIMSweb, QRI, MEAP) to identify specific students who were deficit in differing literacy facets so that targeted interventions could be put into place
  • Monitored student progress bi-weekly through reading curriculum based measurements and comprehension-cloze assessments -tracked the effectiveness of each intervention put into place based on the data-point growth trends of each student in order to ensure each learner was receiving the appropriate intervention, at the appropriate level while exhibiting aggressive/ambitious rates of improvement
  • Integrated Science and Social Studies content into the program so that each core standard would satisfy the Michigan requirements for each content area – heavy focus on expository text and using writing to learn strategies
  • Utilized website development to aid in an effective instructional methodology by focusing only on the ‘big ideas’ of each unit, facilitating focused and intentional vocabulary lessons, guiding interactive components to engage and embed technology, and offer an academic platform for peer-to-peer collaboration (blogging, podcasting, updating wikki pages)
  • Constructed an authentic means to bridge real-world context into the classroom while promoting positive behaviors – set up an economy system based on credits and debits where each student received a bi-weekly paycheck to shop, save, or invest
Aug 2008Jun 2009

First Grade Teacher

Madison School District
  • Developed weekly lesson plans and cross-curricular units based on state and district standards and benchmarks that focused on Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences so that each learner would be set up for success based on individual abilities and instructional levels
  • Maintained a classroom that was HET (Highly Effective Teaching) appropriate and brain friendly while incorporating Brain Gym activities into our daily routine.Used Lifeskills and Life Long Guidelines as a model for expectations.
  • Utilized technology in daily activities with use of a SMART Board
  • Implemented a Balanced Literacy Program that allowed for differentiated instruction and provided an emphasis on the NRP’s five Reading First components via the use of Houghton Mifflin’s core reading program, Guided Reading, Debbie Diller’s Literacy Workstations, S.S.R., Reader’s Workshop, Lucy Calkins Writer’s Workshop, Handwriting Without Tears hand-writing program, and word study based on kinesthetic applications provided by The Phonics Dance
  • Created data driven instructional plans for reading and math interventions based on the RTI model for Tier 1 and Tier 2 students and collaborated with colleagues on best – practice strategies for core Tier 1 instruction based on AIMSweb Progress Monitoring Data
  • Taught Everyday Mathematics lessons that incorporated real-life problem solving, and a balance between whole-class and self-directed learning, with emphasis on communication, facilitation of school-family cooperation, and appropriate use of technology
  • Facilitated hands-on, meaningful Battle Creek Science Unit lessons by allowing students to bring learning to life (classroom habitats, environmental centers, role-playing activities, nature walks, and live Monarch life cycles)
  • Applied “being-there” experiences into the curriculum such as: attending the play Pinocchio to enhance learner’s understanding and enjoyment of fine arts and ELA components, organizing our State Representative to visit our classroom, and visiting a local living laboratory so children could interact and experience the environment naturally
  • Collaborated with other first grade teachers to establish a scope and sequence pacing document for all content subjectareas that was in direct alignment with each of theMichigan’s Grade Level Content Expectations
  • Communicated with parents through weekly newsletters and positive phone calls home to discuss their child’s social and academic highlights
  • Created and developed a leveled reading and leveled math program that utilized parent volunteers to enter the classroom daily and work with each student on specific, targeted skills in effort to help bridge the achievement gap
  • Used a campus-wide MiBLSi Positive Behavioral Support Management system after establishing, modeling, and practicing classroom and school expectations.Adopted Bucket Filling strategies to model positive behaviors.



Amber Teamann

Adam Bellow

Angela Maiers

Professional Development

*Presently - International Keynote Speaker 

ASCD (Houston, TX)

March 2015

MACUL (Detroit, MI)

March 2015

Digital Learning Day (Washington, D.C.)

March 2015

ICE: IL Computing Educators (Pheasant Run, IL)

February 2015

Miami Device (Miami, FL)

November 2014

International Society for Technology in Education: ISTE (Atlanta, GA)

Summer 2014

Blended Learning Conference: Alan November (Boston, MA)

Summer 2014

Wired Differently: Mike Paget (Bloomfield Hills, MI)

Summer 2013 

Differentiated Instruction for the Gifted Learner: Susan Weinbrenner (Bloomfield Hills, MI)

Summer 2013 

21st Century Learning Symposium (Marysville, MI)

Summer 2013

11th Annual Summer Literacy Conference (Hillsdale, MI)

Summer 2013

TechSmith Screencast Camp (Okemos, MI)

Summer 2013

SDE National Conference (Chicago, IL)

Summer 2013

Teachers College: Columbia University (New York)

Summer 2013

International Society for Technology in Education: ISTE (San Antonio, TX)

Summer 2013

International Society for Technology in Education: ISTE (San Diego, CA)

Summer 2012

TechSmith Screencasting Camp

Summer 2012

Incorporating Writing into a RtI Framework, Dr. Archer (Monterey, CA)                                                 

July 2010

 Robert Marzano: Using Assessments to Drive Instruction  (Spring Arbor, MI)                                       

May 2010

 International Reading Association Annual Conference: Educational Institute (Chicago, IL)                 

April 2010

 National Writing Project/MI at Work: Portfolio Writing Assessment, Richard Koch  (Adrian, MI)   

March 2010

 Michigan Reading Association Annual Conference  (Detroit, MI)                                                           

March 2010

 MSU: Literacy Achievement Research Center on Response to Intervention, RtI  (Detroit, MI)             

March 2010

 Implementing an RtI Model at a Secondary Level, Mark Shinn (Lansing, MI)                                   

February 2010

 Dr. Archer: Dynamic Vocabulary Instruction  (Lansing, MI)                                                             

December 2010

 Certified REWARDS Trainer: Decoding, Fluency, Comprehension Intervention  (Lansing, MI)   

December 2010

 Phonics Dance, Ginny Dowd: Multi-sensory Phonics Program/Curriculum (Toledo, OH)         

November 2010

 Dr. Spencer Kagan: Corporative Learning Workshop (Lansing, MI)                                                         

June 2009

 Handwriting Without Tears Conference K – 5 (Lansing, MI)                                                                     

May 2009

 Road to the Code Phonological Awareness Program (Lansing, MI)                                                         

March 2009

 Bully-Proofing your Classroom Prevention Strategies Workshop  (Adrian, MI)                                     

March 2009

 Michigan Reading Association Conference (Grand Rapids, MI)                                                               

March 2009

 Dr. Archer: Dynamic Vocabulary Instruction and Scaffolding Comprehension ( K – 3)               

November  2008

 The Dennison Approach to Whole Brain Learning: Brain Gym  (Lansing, MI)                                 

October 2008

 Highly Effective Teaching (HET) Positive Classroom Support  (Adrian, MI)                                       

August 2008

 Everyday Mathematics Workshop  (Ann Arbor, MI)                                                                             

August 2008

 7 Keys to Comprehension: Chryse Hutchins, author  (Bedford, MI)                                                       

March 2008

 Lucy Calkins: Units of Study for Primary Writing (Monroe, MI)                                                             

January 2008

 Statewide Autism Resources Training (START) (Monroe, MI)                                                             

February 2007

Current Professional Roles

- Fourth Grade Teacher: Cranbrook Educational Community 

- Second Grade Teacher: Cranbrook Educational Community

- Technology Action Group Member: Cranbrook Educational Community

- ISTE member (International Society for Technology in Education)

- ASCD member (formerly the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development)

- NCTE member (National Council for Teachers of English)

- MRA member (Michigan Reading Association)

- MACUL member (Michigan Association for Computer Users in Learning)

- National Writing Project Member

- Michigan Reading Association Technology chairperson

- Michigan Reading Association chairperson: Technology Strand

- Contributing Author: Teaching Blog Addict

- Simple K12 Presenter

- SMART Technologies Exemplary Educator

- A Plus Workshop Presenter

- Bam! Radio Podcast Commentator

- EdCamp Detroit Event Organizer

- SDE (Staff Development for Educators) Presenter

- Bammy Council of Peers Member

- #flipclass Chat Moderator on Twitter

Teaching Credentials

- Teaching Certificate: K-8

- Endorsement: 6-8 Social Studies

- REWARDS Trainer: Reading Excellence, Word Attack and Rate Development

- Michigan Literacy Progress Profile Certification

Objective and Synopsis

Encouraging students and educators through demonstration, integration, and coaching is quintessential to

teaching the value and enjoyment of life-long learning.


Seeking consulting and speaking roles in  schools and districts where hands-on, collaborative learning

encourages students to become life-long learners and in areas where an impact on

school improvement, professional development and student achievement take place.

. Currently working in education, with a business background, I value the importance of technology integration and global preparation into the learning environment.  Being an involved person, I streamline my creative teaching ideas into project-based applications that enhance the academic standards for all learners.  My Master’s of Education focus is in curriculum and instruction.  I’ve researched best-practice teaching methodologies and traveled the country presenting to educators on how to create learning environments that will help shape the future of our practices in education.  I take my background in teaching, reading intervention, differentiating instruction, and program development and create ideas to infuse technology enhanced activities that directly correlate to our common core national standards so that teachers can automatically begin a new direction.  This idea brings in a research-rich educational experience to bring each learner to a higher realm of cognition.

"If we teach today as we taught yesterday, we rob our children of tomorrow." - John Dewy


Please view my website for a list of current presentation topics:

You can also view my professional speaking page: 

- Digital Workstations for the K-5 Classroom

- Sharing the Student Voice

- Personalize Instruction for All Learners and Create a Brain-Friendly, Blended Learning Space that is Student Centric

- Schiller Summer Institute "Create.  Connect.  Collaborate" and "App Overload" and "Reading Workshop" (August 2013) Bloomfield Hills, MI

- Summer Literacy Conference "Elevating the Craft of Writing for K-2" (August 2013) Hillsdale, MI

- Summer Literacy Conference "Digging Deeper into Non-Fiction and Persuasive Writing for K-2" (August 2013) Hillsdale, MI

- SDE: Extraordinary Educators Conference -  "Digital Workstations: How to Flip a Lesson & Maximize Your Teaching Time" (July 2013) Chicago, IL

- ISTE Ignite Presenter: (June 2013) San Antonio, TX

- ISTE "A Mobile Movie Studio: Create Classroom Videos with the iPad" (June 2013) San Antonio, TX

- ISTE "The Tomorrow Toolkit" (June 2013) San Antonio, TX

- EdCamp Detroit (May 2013) Detroit, MI

- MACUL Featured Presenter (March 2013) Detroit, MI

- Michigan Flipped Learning Conference (January 2012) Byron Center, MI

- Eastern Michigan Writing Project: Reading Workshop (January 2012) Ypsilanti, MI

- ISTE Ignite 2012 San Diego, CA

- ISTE Panel 2012 "Collaborative Mentoring for New Teachers" San Diego, CA

- Simple K12 Webinars

- Monroe County: Summer Technology Institute: SMART Technologies

- Lenawee County: Technology Conference: SMART Technologies

- Michigan Reading Association Annual Conference 2011 (Grand Rapids)

- Michigan Reading Association Annual Conference 2010 (Detroit)

- Title I Parent Night

- Qualitative Reading Inventory

- Handwriting Without Tears District In-service

Professional Distinctions

- Microsoft Innovation Expert  

- Teach to Lead Fellow

- PBS Digital Innovator

- NAIS Future Teacher - VA

- Cranbrook Faculty Award Recipiant 

- ASCD Emerging Leader 

- MACUL 2014 Pre-K - 12 Teacher of the Year

- SMART Technologies Exemplary Educator

- Target National Scholarship Grant Recipient

- Response to Intervention (RtI) Action Research: pending publication

- Web 2.0 Book Publication on Digital Writing Workshop

- WhitePaper: TechSmith "Making Heads and Tails of Flipped Learning"

- Best Selling co-Author: Amazing Grades

- 2011 Really Good Stuff Monthly Blogger

- Edudemic Magazine Author (first issue)

Media Mentions

- Scholastic Instructor Magazine: Cool Teacher "Social Media Sage" special feature (February 2015)

- Top 10 Webinars of 2014 for EdWeb

- Accidentally Creating a Digital Writing Workshop: Edutopia (2014)

- Educator's Choice Content Award Winner for SmartBrief for Education (2014)

- U.S. Department of Education Office of Educational Technology: Future Ready Schools Webinar (2014)

- EdTech Magazine: Honor Roll of 2014 Must Read Blogs (2014)

- eSchool News: The Best Tweets from ISTE 2014 (2014)

- MindShift: Ditching the Desks (2014) 

- Scholastic Instructor Magazine: interview "Common Core: Fact vs. Fiction"

- EduBlog Award Nominee (2013: 5 Categories - Finalist)

- EduBlog Award Nominee (2012: Educational Technology Blog & Individual Blog)

- EduBlog Award Finalist (2011: Best New Blog)

- Study Blue: Blue Tiffany Apple Teacher Award

- Associated Content: Top 5 Educational Technology Blogs

- Teacher Hub: Kleinspiration, a Top Teacher Resource

- Lenawee County: The Daily Telegram, "Mysteries in the Middle" a Literacy Dinner Theater Production

- Guest Author: Edudemic and Edutopia

- Publication: Edudemic e-Magazine (iPad)