Ormiston College’s Joel Speranza was the only teacher to be short-listed in two categories for this year’s TEACHX awards, nominated for both Excellence in Teaching and Innovation in Teaching.

Formerly known as the Excellence in Teaching Awards, TEACHX recognises and celebrates the inspiring work of classroom teachers, those in early childhood settings, school leaders, deputy principals and principals across Queensland.

Continually innovating in his classroom, the Mathematics Department, the College and the worldwide education community, Mr Speranza enthusiastically works with other teachers – collaborating with a vibrant community of Queensland mathematics teachers that support each other.

When COVID-19 forced Ormiston College to rethink the way education was delivered, Mr Speranza started blogging at a furious pace. This helped other teachers with ideas, and also clarified his own thinking – allowing him to provide the best education he could to his own students.

Through both his youtube channel and his website created as a response to COVID-19: https://mathsvideosaustralia.com, he shares his resources with teachers and students across Queensland and the world.

Mr Speranza was one of the first educators in Australia to use a Lightboard to film educational videos. After building a prototype in his garage, he received an Ormiston College Innovation Grant to have an engineering firm build the College’s first Lightboard.

This Lightboard allows teachers to easily make engaging and pedagogically-sound educational videos. With the unique way of teaching 'through-glass', teachers can lower the extraneous cognitive load on students by directing the learning with their eyes and hand gestures. This also builds human connection, which has proven particularly important during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mr Speranza has previously received the following accolades:

  • Current finalist for Australian Education Awards - Head of Department
  • Named one of 12 Flipped Learning Global Master Teachers
  • Named an Advance Queensland Community Digital Champion
  • QLD Teacher Excellence awards finalist in the category of Teacher of the Year
  • Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert

Winners and finalists for the TEACHX Awards will be announced in October 2020.

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