John Spencer a former middle school teacher and current college professor on a quest to transform schools into bastions of creativity and wonder. John is on a mission to see teachers unleash the creative potential in all of their students so that kids can be makers, designers, artists, and engineers. He regularly explores research, interviews educators, deconstructs systems, and studies real-world examples of design thinking in action. He shares these insights in books, blog posts, journal articles, free resources, animated videos, and podcasts.
In Spencer’s second year of teaching, he used design thinking for our student-centered documentary project. Everything changed. He spent the next decade on a journey to empower his students to become creative thinkers and problem-solvers. This meant mural projects, service-learning projects, designing STEM camps, and creating coding projects. He also helped design his school district’s STEM courses and digital journalism course.
Along the way, he helped develop the student-friendly LAUNCH Cycle, a design thinking framework for K-12 students. He is the co-author of the bestselling books Launch and Empower. In 2013, he spoke at the White House, sharing a vision for how to empower students to be future-ready through creativity and design thinking. John Spencer has led workshops and delivered keynotes around the world.
Alec Couros is a Professor of Educational Technology and Media and the Director of the Centre for Teaching and Learning at the University of Regina. He has given hundreds of workshops and presentations, nationally and internationally, on topics such as Openness in education, Networked Learning, Social Media in Education, Digital Citizenship, and Critical Media Literacy. His graduate and undergraduate courses help current and future educators understand how to use and take advantage of the educational potential offered by the tools of connectivity.