The Henry Ford and Litton Entertainment recently announced winners for The Henry Ford’s Innovation Nation Teacher Innovator Awards. A Kenilworth Junior High School teacher, Laura Bradley, was selected for first place. The award recognizes educators who are using the classroom to inspire innovation, creativity, problem solving and critical thinking among their students.
Bradley decided to apply for the Henry Ford when another teacher sent her the application and suggested she apply. She tells us the process included making a video, plus a written application that included a description of her program and how it incorporates STEM, creativity, innovation, etc.; plus the standards that are addressed in the class; plus a reference letter. As part of this, she was very happy a former student Sam Baeza, a 9th grader at Casa Grande, wrote a letter for her to support her application. Also she submitted her application with her Digital Media curriculum and standards. Included in her application was the Digital Media project website she had created so that her students could work independently in her class.
Bradley gives credit to Sonoma State University’s MA program in Education (emphasis on Ed Tech with Dr. Jessica Parker) for starting her on this path: when she started that program in 2009, she was not tech-savvy at all and her classroom had very little tech. She wrote grants for laptops and pioneered the 1:1 laptop classroom in Petaluma. Then she went to Google Teacher Academy and things developed from there.
Here’s the video she made as part of her application:
CLICK PAGE 2 TO SEE EXCERPTS FROM HER APPLICATION AND PHOTOS OF SOME OF HER 3D PROJECTS