My name is Stephanie DeMichele, and I'm a #BoyMom, a #GenZ cheerleader, a #LifelongLearner, and a slayer of #edtech fears from Cleveland, Ohio.
I began my career in 1997 teaching high school English. The birth of my first son in 2001 (and the rather quick appearance of my second son in 2002) presented the opportunity for me to be a stay-at-home mom for a while. However, I knew that when I returned to the classroom, the days of overheads, VCRs, and chalkboards would be a thing of the past. So, during that time, I took courses and workshops that explored the strange new world of edtech.
A few years later, upon discovering that my oldest son was gifted, I became a GT parent advocate, and it was this work that led to my return to teaching in 2008 as the Coordinator for Gifted and Talented Education (K-8) at a small private school. I was given the freedom to develop the course, and I envisioned at the time a "paper-less" classroom that utilized the latest in project-based learning and emerging Web 2.0 applications at that time: wikis, podcasting, website creation, PBL, etc. My ideas and enthusiasm for edtech caught the attention of others, which then led to my unexpected side career in professional development and coaching.
When I was recommended for the position of Technology Instructor at another school, I'll admit to feeling unprepared, but I was again give the enviable opportunity of developing a curriculum from the ground up, customizing it, and then integrating it into the regular curriculum. It was a challenge on which I couldn't pass, and it was rewarding to introduce our students and teachers to innovative and exciting new ways of learning. And so, I became the unofficial integration specialist, too!
I said a difficult goodbye to the classroom to take a position the Technology Integration Coordinator for a mid-sized school district for two years. My work included designing, implementing, and overseeing, district-wide technology integration operations; developing technology blended and flipped learning opportunities for teachers; and assisting with district initiatives such as data-driven decision-making, professional learning communities, and re-thinking formative assessments.
My journey, as you can see, hasn't been linear or planned, or even expected, but I'm loving it! At this time in my life, I'm exactly where I need to be, and that's as a digital learning designer and coach with the Educational Service Center of Northeast Ohio, working with teachers and students to incorporate and transform our learning environments with technology.
In 2016, I was a recipient of the Ideastream Betty C. Cope Award for outstanding service and commitment to supporting the education outreach of its organization. In 2018, I was asked to join Matt Miller's Ditch That Textbook Speakers Bureau.
And I'm not done yet!
Since 2017, I've been obsessed with creating online learning experiences via online edtech courses, webinars, and a library of short instructional videos. I've also been traveling and speaking more at conferences and other events, and at times I've been asked to design learning for corporate settings. And I'm always trying to figure out how to make digital learning more accessible, less scary, and easy-peasy for today's learners.
Thanks for stopping by, and if you have any questions about me or my work, please feel free to get in touch!