You may be on the wrong page because of outdated links. If that's you, head over to the Site Map to find what you're looking for.
After 15 years in middle school, high school and college classrooms, I now spend my time as an education and technology consultant excited about the learning process and the power we have as agents of change in shaping that process. I especially enjoy facilitating conversations on the intersection of social studies, gamification, and technology integration.
My educational career began at Derby Middle School, finding ways to help thirteen year olds enjoy American History. I earned a Masters in American History in 1995 and continued developing innovative practices and sharing them with his students. That was followed by five years working in higher education, designing effective instruction and integrating video games into social science classrooms at Tabor College. I now travel across the country as an ESSDACK education specialist providing keynotes, presentations, and curriculum development.
My love for social studies was kindled in elementary school when I fell in love with my first National Geographic map. Even at a young age, I was beginning to understand what Robert Louis Stevenson meant when he described his treasure map as having the “power of infinite, eloquent suggestion.” My passion for history and the social studies continued to grow and is now expressed in sharing that passion with others.
I write almost daily at History Tech, a 2014 Edublog finalist, and maintain Social Studies Central, a repository of resources targeted at K-12 educators cited in national professional journals. You can find my published articles in the National Social Studies Supervisors Association journal and the website Teaching History. I have also had the chance to help author numerous discipline specific curricula.
Starting in 2013, I acted as co-chair for the Kansas social standards writing and assessment committee and am currently president of the Kansas Council for the Social Studies. As director of two US Department of Education Teaching American History grants, I introduced the use of mobile learning technology to middle and high school teachers. Currently I'm working together with the Center for Children and Technology to help roll out their Zoom In online software and have piloted a variety of video games and simulations. I also travel frequently to assist schools as they integrate Apple and Google products.
I believe that learning should be more than cute and engaging activities. Our task is simple – preparing kids to think critically and to have skills needed to be effective citizens.
Using visuals, stories, and an animated personality, I create an enjoyable and energetic learning environment that one participant called “connectable.” The most effective sessions are those that build relationships between my audience, myself, and the content while building capacity. So my focus is always providing practical ideas coupled with research that teachers and administrators can use to improve the learning process. My C4 Framework – Collect, Collaborate, Create, and Communicate – provides a structure for all of my workshops and presentations.
Learning Forward Conference
Using the C4 Framework in the 21st Century Social Studies Classroom
National Council for the Social Studies Conference
Six Sweet Strategies for Integrating Reading & Writing in Elementary Classrooms
Gamifying the Classroom: A Framework of Fun
San Diego, California
Midwest Educational Technology Conference
Three Tasty Tech Tools for Integrating Social Studies & Common Core Literacy Standards
St Charles, Missouri
Digging Deeper into Primary Sources Conference Keynote
Pierre, South Dakota
Chromebooks and GAFE: Implementation & Best Practice
Podstock 2015 Closing Keynote
Games and Learning Conference Keynote
MidAmerica Nazarene University