Walk with the dreamers, the believers, the courageous, the cheerful, the planners, the doers, the successful people with their heads in the clouds and their feet on the ground. Walk with those who have ideals, with zest to help and lift, to create and contribute. Let their spirit ignite a fire within you to leave this world better than when you found it. . . . Associate with the creative people wherever you find them. Make friends with them, go where they are, talk with them, listen to them, be open and receptive to them, let them inspire you. Catch their attitudes, their way of thinking and living. - Wilfred Peterson
An innovator and leader in the field of educational technology Benjamin has presented at numerous conferences throughout North America. What makes him a highly effective and sought-after speaker is that, at heart, he is a teacher with a contagious passion and enthusiasm for helping people discover a brand new world of teaching and learning. Prior to his current position at Springville-Griffith Institute CSD he taught 5th grade for many years. His current projects outside of school include working with the New York State United Teachers and Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights on an international human rights curriculum. Benjamin is the co creator and facilitator of two nation-wide Human Rights contest with Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights, the Tibeca Film Institute and Grammys. He is also a lead technical consultant for the American Federation of Teachers' Civic Voices project, a project funded in part by the US Department of Education. Benjamin is the current chairperson for NYSUT's Instructional Technology Committee, member of the New York State Senate Online Learning Advisory Council and sits on the New York State Department of Education's Educational Technology Advisory Committee. In 2010, Benjamin was awarded the International Society for Technology Education’s "Making IT Happen Award” honoring educational technology leaders around the world for their commitment and innovation in the field of educational technology.
Have an idea or a question on how to best integrate technology into your educational program? Together with my global network of ED Tech experts we can find a way to make your idea come to fruition.
Contact me to learn more about the current trends in educational technology? Learn best practices from around the world that are allowing educators to better prepare their classrooms for their students.
Social Networks can be a scary place, especially for our youth. If you or your school is having issues or concerns with a social network and would like assistance in best practice please contact me.
Since 2010 I have worked along side RFK Human Right to develop and facilitate a number of national contests. Over the years we have had thousands of submissions and tens of thousands of students participate.
STUDENT VIDEO CONTEST (6-12)
A collaboration with the American Federation of Teachers and the Tribeca Film Institute and based on Kerry Kennedy's book Speak Truth To Power: Human Rights Defenders Who Are Changing Our World, the middle and high school filmmaking competition encourages students to become engaged in human rights through video production. www.speaktruthvideo.com
STUDENT MUSIC CONTEST
In partnership with the GRAMMY Museum, we invite students to produce original songs and music videos that take a stand against human rights abuses. Using their own voices and perspectives, students can create meaningful change on pressing issues such as sexual harassment and assault, bullying, police brutality and other important topics related to social justice. www.speakupsingout.org
ELEMENTARY VIDEO CONTEST
The Speak Truth To Power student Public Service Announcement (PSA) contest encourages elementary school students to become engaged in human rights through video production. Students are asked to write and produce an original PSA that motivates others to create change. The contest is sponsored by the National Education Association and Robert F. Kennedy Human Rights and is based on Kerry Kennedy's book Speak Truth To Power. www.everyonehasrights.com
In 2010 I was began working with the International Affairs Department of the American Federation of Teachers. The Civic Voices project was a collaborative partnership between South Africa, Columbia, Georgia, Ireland, Cambodia, Poland, Mongolia and the United States. The goal of the project was to collect the historical stories of trade labors from across the globe. During this time I worked with a team to redesig the main Civic Voices website, traveled to South Africa to collect over 1,000 interviews with local students and created the following web resource. This website was selected in 2011 by the US Department of Education as one of 10 teaching resources to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the September 11 attacks and shared with districts throughout the United States.
Civic Voices For Peace
Voices for Peace is a civic education resource developed by the Civic Voices project to commemorate the tenth anniversary of the September 11 terrorist attacks. The oral history excerpts utilized in this resource were compiled from two sources:
- Civic Voices: International Democracy Memory Bank archive, www.civicvoices.org
- The September 11, 2001 Narrative and Memory Project from the Columbia University Center for Oral
Civic Voices is administered by the American Federation of Teachers Educational Foundation with a grant from the U.S. Department of Education under the Education for Democracy Act approved by the United States Congress. The contents of this resource, and the contents of the materials to commemorate the tenth anniversary of September 11, do not necessarily represent the policy of the Department of Education and you should not assume endorsement by the federal government.
The Voices for Peace site was created by Benjamin Higgins, a teacher at Springville-Griffith Institute, NY.