Award Winners Announced at Worldwide Innovative Education Forum

The winners of the Worldwide Innovative Teacher Awards, presented my Microsoft Partners in Learning were announced Friday at Microsoft's 2009 Worldwide Innovative Education Forum (IEF) being held in Salvador, Brazil. The awards recognize teachers who demonstrate exemplary use of technology in the classroom to improve student learning.

Entrants the world over apply technology to all subjects and facets of education, with winning projects covering topics ranging from cultural tolerance to spreadsheet games to insect behavior. From thousands of contenders in regional and national contests, 250 winners were in contention for the international awards. Fourteen winners were named at the forum in Brazil, with best practice winners and first and second runners-up named in each of four categories; an award in one category was shared by two colleagues, and one runner-up slot resulted in a tie.

Thirty-six education experts from 23 countries served on this year's judging panel. "Every year the submissions seem to get better and better, and this year is no exception," said Judge Eduardo O.C. Chaves of Brazil. "The level of sophistication of these entries shows that teachers are continuing to innovate and expand the ways they use technology to help students all over the world realize their potential."

Winning Best Practice (First Prize) in the Educators' Choice category for her project on indigenous plants, Moliehi Sekese of Lesotho said "Just being here and seeing how teachers from all over the world are enriching the lives of students is ultimately even more rewarding."

The 2010 IEF and Innovative Teacher Awards are slated to be held in Cape Town, South Africa. Educators wishing to inquire into entering projects in the competition can visit the Microsoft Partners in Learning Web site here. A complete list of 2009 award winners can be found here.

About the Author

Scott Aronowitz is a freelance writer based in Las Vegas. He has covered the technology, advertising, and entertainment sectors for seven years. He can be reached here.