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Redmond, U.S.A. — Microsoft Corp. announced 16 educators from California, Colorado, Florida, Louisiana, Michigan, Texas and Washington have been selected as winners of the Partners in Learning U.S. Forum. The annual event recognizes innovative teachers and school leaders who creatively and effectively use technology in their curriculum to help improve the way kids learn and increase student success. Out of thousands that applied, 100 educators from 25 states attended the event to compete for the opportunity to represent the United States at the Partners in Learning Global Forum this November.
“These winning educators are catalysts for change and are the best in the nation at embracing technology to inspire and engage students and help transform education in their local communities,” said Andrew Ko, general manager, U.S. Partners in Learning, Microsoft. “They all are incredibly passionate and driven to make an impact on each and every student they teach. Their creative project-based-learning classroom activities show real impact on student learning and success and should be scaled out as best practices in their own school districts and across the country.”
Winning projects immerse students in active, hands-on learning, guiding them to employ collaboration and creative problem-solving skills. The 11 outstanding projects focus on encouraging entrepreneurial thinking in students, virtual learning for students with learning differences, creative uses of gaming to enhance critical thinking and service learning projects in which students engage with their community. The projects exhibit the educators’ abilities to exceed strict academic standards while making learning fun and effective for their students.
The following are Partners in Learning 2012 U.S. Forum winners:
Knowledge Building & Critical Thinking
Extended Learning Beyond the Classroom
Cutting-Edge Use of Technology for Learning
Educator as Innovator and Change Agent
The winning projects were scored based on a comprehensive judging rubric that incorporated research-based criteria for 21st century teaching and learning. Full descriptions of the winning projects can be found on the Microsoft TeachTec blog. A distinguished panel of judges — including representatives from the Arizona House of Representatives, Office of the Deputy Mayor for Education from Washington, D.C, Chicago Public Schools and International Society for Technology in Education, as well as other U.S. superintendents and university and education leaders — evaluated the educator projects.
The winning educators will advance to the Partners in Learning Global Forum, which will take place in Prague Nov. 28 through Dec. 1. This ninth annual Partners in Learning Global Forum is the culmination of local and regional events that reach nearly 200,000 participants from more than 115 countries.
Hosted by Microsoft Partners in Learning, the Partners in Learning U.S. Forum is one of a series of regional forums taking place around the world. This annual event is designed to promote the sharing and scaling of exceptional practices of learning that incorporate technology in the classroom, to recognize and celebrate leading educators and innovative schools in the United States, and to offer educators opportunities for professional development and collaborate with and learn from peers across the country.