Return to Headlines

Technology teacher named US Teacher of the Year by Level Up Village

Tina Coffey holds the plaque naming her the US Teacher of the Year Tina Coffey, Instructional Technology Resource Teacher (ITRT) at Oak Grove Elementary School has been named the United States Teacher of the Year by Level Up Village, a program that connects U.S. schools and students with schools and students across the globe.  Starting in late February, Coffey worked with 5th grade students to collaborate with students from the Juan Delmonte School in Argentina, Honduras Child Alliance in Honduras and NicaPhoto in Nicaragua. To begin the project, Oak Grove students participated in a live Skype session with their counterpart classroom.

Each Oak Grove student was paired up with an international student.  Together the pair collaborated on a project to develop a container to house a solar-powered flashlight.  Students shared ideas and concepts through several video posts and messages.  The Oak Grove students learned various Spanish words and phrases to communicate with their partner.  At the same time, students also learned more about each other's country and culture.  At the end of the project, the final collaborative design was created using a 3D printer.

"Tina brings a great deal of energy and enthusiasm into each project she does with the students," said Oak Gove Elementary School principal Kim Bradshaw.  "She is a gifted and talented resource for our teachers and the students thoroughly enjoy learning with her," Bradshaw said.

“Tina was passionate about our program the very first time we spoke. She understood the impact our courses could have on her students, both in terms of the STEM skills and the cultural exchange. She spent months trying to figure out how to get approval and funding to pilot a class,” said Katie Cook, Sales Director at Level Up Village. “Once Tina got the go-ahead, she created an incredible, immersive learning experience by bringing in her Spanish teacher to collaborate on the course, as well as high-school students to assist the younger kids. We are thoroughly impressed by her tenacity, her creativity and her dedication.”

Read more in a blog about Tina's project by Level Up Village.