Inspiring educators to lead more compelling, engaging classrooms.
Using storytelling, giving examples from the classroom, and sharing proven and effective practices- Trevor inspires educators to lead a more compelling and engaging classroom. In the past few years, Trevor has traveled the globe giving keynotes and workshops to a variety of educators, including leading the Design Expedition at Fontys University in the Netherlands, a talk about the need for Soft Skills in Bogota, Colombia, giving a TED Talk at TEDx San Antonio, and training teachers in Project Based Learning in rural Iowa. Trevor offers the perspective of an author, speaker, project based learning expert, and most importantly- a classroom teacher, to help teachers find more ways to engage their students and transform their classrooms.
From short, day-long, and multi-day workshops to keynote speeches and in-classroom coaching, Trevor gives concrete tools, ideas, and inspiration to both educators, non-educators, and students.
Frequently Requested Keynotes/Workshops:
“Make Learning Epic: Teaching With the Power of Story”
Is there any point in learning something if you’re just going to forget it?
And this raises a bigger question: if learning is not memorable, should it even be considered learning?
Trevor shares how educators can design and shape their classrooms to be unfolding stories with real conflict and real heroes solving that conflict. Using the power of storytelling, brain science, and the principles of Project Based Learning, teachers can achieve real student engagement, and in return, learning that is permanent and memorable. When students are empowered to solve authentic problems and teachers become designers of meaningful learning experiences, school becomes a place where everyone can thrive. Through stories, research, and even some spoken word poetry, this talk can help any teacher, in any subject area, and in any grade level learn practical and proven practices to transform their classrooms into settings where students are engaged, challenged, and transformed.
"Launching Rockets – Making Connections with Challenging Students”
Some students’ stories have made them hard to connect with and difficult to reach. They are often written off as “bad kids” or “too far gone.” However, by finding authentic ways to engage them in the classroom, as well as learning their stories and building relationships, connections can be made with the most difficult students. This talk is part inspirational and part instructional as it shares teaching practices that create an engaged and meaningful classroom for all students.
“Stop Calling Them Soft Skills!”
Most employers say the top reason people are fired or never hired in the first place is that they lack soft skills: critical thinking, communication, collaboration, adaptability, and confidence. People lack these skills not because they are incapable of learning them, but because they never had a reason to. So much of the education system is focused on technical knowledge and "hard skills," and very little on these essential skills.
Trevor talks about helping students find purpose in their education and work and use that purpose to develop the skills needed to succeed. When we have a defined purpose, a goal that would cause us to self-destruct if we did not achieve it, we will obtain whatever skills necessary to overcome any obstacles to fulfill that purpose. With purpose, anyone can then move from fired to thriving in the modern education system, workforce, and society.
“Epic Project Based Learning 101”
1 & 2 hour, Half-day, Full-day, and 2 day workshops offered
Trevor’s PBL 101 course was developed after years of working in a New Tech project based learning school, as well as his experience as a Buck Institute National Faculty member. Through this engaging and learning-intensive program, Trevor teaches any educator from any grade level how to implement project based learning in their school and classroom.
Epic Project Based Learning is about using the power of story to engage students so that learning is memorable and transformational. Storytelling has not only proven to be the best way of sharing information, but also for learning and retaining that information. A class can be designed and taught in the format of a story, adding authenticity and real world challenges to the work students accomplish. This workshop gives concrete methods, practices, and resources to create a standards-based, skills and content rich, story-centric classroom in an innovative project based learning model.
In the half-day workshop, teachers leave equipped with a strong understanding of what project based learning is and how it can transform their classroom. They will also leave with the tools to brainstorm, plan, and implement projects in their own classes.
Full Day: The goal of the 1 day workshop is for teachers to leave feeling empowered and able to plan and execute projects in their own classrooms. Along with the understanding teachers gain as described in the half-day workshop, participants will begin planning their own projects based on standards from their specific grade level and content areas.
2 Day: Building upon Day 1, teachers will fully plan a project based learning project for their students. Using the provided tools and resources, participants with collaborate with their peers as well as Trevor (workshop facilitator) to design a complete project for their classes. The goal of day 2 is for teachers to leave with a fully planned, standards-based project ready for students, as well as confidence to plan further projects outside of the workshop setting.
"Using Technology to Make Your Curriculum Authentic"
Technology for the sake of having technology is pointless and a waste of time and resources. However, when ed technology is used to make learning authentic, it has an essential purpose in the classroom. This session is about how certain technologies can be used to enhance authenticity in the classroom, assist students in meaningful work, and teach them skills they will need throughout life.
"Discovering Your Purpose: Finding a Reason to Overcome Anything"
A Keynote for Students
People don't quit because something is too hard. They quit because the hard work was not worth it. At the heart of overcoming seemingly impossible obstacles and developing perseverance despite difficult challenges, is having purpose. Trevor talks about helping students find purpose in their education and work and how to use that purpose to develop the skills needed to succeed. When we have a defined purpose, a goal that would cause us to self-destruct if we did not achieve it, we will obtain whatever skills necessary to overcome any obstacles to fulfill that purpose. Using storytelling, humor, research, and even some spoken word poetry, Trevor helps students discover purpose so they can thrive in education, career, and life.
What do you and your staff need?
Trevor can create a keynote and/or workshop to fit your school or conference’s needs. Want a project based learning workshop that focuses on the use of technology? Or how about a standards-based grading session that also talks about service learning?
If you have an idea that is not listed on this page, just send an email of what you’re thinking and we will make it happen.
“By far the best session I attended! Trevor was amazing and delivered such a great reminder about the power we have as educators. I could have listened to him tell stories all day.”
This was one of the best keynotes I’ve ever seen. Trevor made us laugh; he made us cry. And I left with tools to really put his ideas into practice in my own classroom.
— Maria Stevens, Teacher, Boyne City, Michigan
Every teacher wants to have the kind of impact that Trevor is talking about. Every teacher wants to create the kind of experiences in the classroom that he’s laying out. Today we’re learning how to do that. So we’re excited all of our faculty are exposed to this, so we can go back to our schools and recreate the same thing.
— Craig Hammond, Executive Director, Metropolitan Nashville Public Schools