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Dedra Stafford    

Speaker, Trainer, & Author in Education

Dedra Stafford is an internationally known speaker, trainer and author in education. She is a former middle level teacher and district professional development specialist who now consults and provides staff development in classroom management, differentiated instruction, technology integration, and teacher motivation.

Dedra has presented in 3 international schools and over 30 states. Much of her time is spent supporting high-risk schools in an embedded capacity. Mrs. Stafford holds both an administrator’s and a superintendent’s license and collaborates with district leaders, principals, coaches and teachers across the country supporting their work in providing quality instruction that produces success in the classroom.

Dedra’s personal story of her educational journey will leave audiences with a newfound determination to do “whatever it takes” to reach the students in their classrooms. For the last 12 years, she has been helping educators bridge the digital divide and improve school performance through publications and hands-on trainings at conferences and schools across the globe.

A regular contributor to professional journals and online teacher resources, she stays abreast of current educational issues as well as technology trends. As a former classroom teacher, Dedra Stafford understands the need for professional development that offers practical ideas, which can be implemented immediately into the classroom. Dedra has a unique ability to put teachers at ease as she teaches concepts and beliefs incorporated with humor in a user friendly way. Your audience will laugh, learn, and have a new enthusiasm about technology, climate, curriculum, and classroom techniques in any of Dedra’s sessions.


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Speech Topics

Reaching and Teaching the Digital Learner (Keynote or all day Session)

This keynote address is upbeat, motivational and informative. It can be a presented as a one hour keynote to a full day session.

The Digital Natives are not the students of the past. They learn and think differently which means teachers must learn to teach differently. In this keynote, Dedra will show teachers how to speak the language, use the tools, and make learning relevant to the 21st Century. Blogs, wikis, and web 2.0 will be explained and showcased. Done well, technology can be an awesome tool in the classroom, but it is not always easy! That’s why teachers need to sometimes be motivated to rise to the challenge by grabbing the attention of the video game generation and helping them use the tech skills of their future!

Learn to:

  • Understand the reason why technology must become a part of the classroom.
  • Identify the difference between integration and seamlessly integrating technology
  • Use technology as a Communication tool, Instructional tool and a Performance tool in the classroom.

The Happy Teacher: 5 Secrets to a ‘Stress-Less’ Education Career (Keynote or Session)

This keynote address is a light-hearted look at education and personal health and wellness. The presentation format is high energy and can be presented in a 45-60 min format.

The high stakes testing environment in education today is contributing to the fact that we are losing teachers and potential teachers at record highs. Teachers came to this profession with a passion but many don’t have the tools they need to balance stress, life, and work. The audience will laugh and have fun as they work through the 5 techniques in staying healthy, happy and balanced in the classroom and at home. The techniques Dedra will share will help the natural nurturers of the world take care of themselves so that they can stay connected to the passion for touching the lives of children and others!

Session Descriptor: In the high stakes testing classrooms of today, teacher burnout is occurring more and more. Teachers need tools for teaching but they also need tools for managing the work-life balance of staying happy and fulfilled. Come laugh, learn, and find your HAPPY TEACHER again.

The “Best Stuff” is in the Middle

This session will be full of energy and audience interaction and presented in 45min-60min formats.

This keynote will remind educators how important we are in the lives of the middle school students we teach. Dedra will help teachers realize how the middle level research reinforces what we have known all along, middle school can be the most impacting period in the educational journey.

Learn to:

  • Recognize the pivotal role middle level education plays in overall student success
  • Reconnect to the passion you have as an educator

Session Descriptor: Just like the Oreo cookie, middle level is where all the magic happens in education. A student’s journey is guided and misguided by the impact people have around them. Come in a celebrate with Dedra as she makes you laugh, cry and remember the best kept secret of education “The Best Stuff” is in the middle!

Pep Assemblies, Red Pens, and School Lunches – Is that all it’s really about? (Keynote)

This keynote address is a hilarious look at attitudes and how choosing the right attitude can make all the difference! It can be presented in 45min-2 ½ hr formats.

Teachers don’t really teach for the summers…Do we? This keynote will remind educators why we CHOOSE to walk through the doors of a school building even after we have received our diplomas! Dedra will help teachers remember what they do every day matters. She will talk the audience through making choices in their daily attitudes; and how to avoid the “zappers” who we let affect our attitudes. This session will be full of energy and audience interaction. Dedra will share her personal story of education and why teachers must stay healthy and fully present every day.


  • Techniques that keep you balanced and positive in education and life
  • To avoid the negatives that pull you down
  • To reconnect to the reasons you went into the field of education

Session Descriptor: You came into the education field full of hope, energy, and a desire to CHANGE the world! Now you catch yourself looking at the bank attendants, and door greeters wondering how hard it would be to make the transition. Educators are care givers who give until they can’t give anymore. Dedra will help you put yourself at the top of the list, create habits that will prevent burnout, and remember why you are where you are. This keynote will have you laughing and learning as you get reconnected to your passion for teaching.

iPad in Education: Out of the Box and into Our Schools

This full day workshop will take the participants from the basics of operation into the hands-on real applications for educators. After the basics are covered, the workshop will highlight every day uses of the iPad for principals, teachers, or students (dependant on the audience) The workshop will give participants hands on experience using apps, forms, and tools that are specifically useful for the educational field. Whether you want to use iPads as an administrator, teacher, or student, this workshops is designed to help you be more productive, connected, and tech savvy.

iLearn, iRemember and iPad….. Using technology to Engage Today’s Learner

“Whatever it Takes” is the motto for keeping the multitasked generation active and engaged in our classrooms. Come in and learn what tools are out there for iPads and iPods to facilitate learning, collaborating, and creating. This session is always changing as the best apps have yet to be released! Bring your own device to this session for a hands-on experience.

iLead: Principals using iPads to work smarter not harder

Is your iPad a vital tool daily? Or does it sit on the shelf? Discover how an iPad can help you become a more effective leader. We will cover a variety of topics from iPad tips & tricks to apps & techniques for all your obligations. From walkthroughs to student/teacher communication, the apps are out there & we'll show you how they can work for you. iPads facilitate learning, collaborating, & creating, if they become a daily part of your life.

App Swap: iPad App Session

Yes… there is always an “app for that” and there is never enough time in the day to know them all. Apps are being developed at lightning speed (over a million apps to date) and as a busy teacher there is never enough time to explore. This session will be an old fashion swap party with a technology twist. We will share the latest and greatest apps for the classroom and productivity. You will see educational apps in action and get a chance to share your favorites. We will also discuss how to stay informed when it comes to new educational apps and how to use apps as a parental outreach tool. Bring your favorite apps, ideas, and discussions to this swap!

Teach This…. Not That: Integrating Technology into the Classroom

Technology is ever-present, touching almost every part of our lives, but sometimes schools struggle when it comes to integrating technology into the classroom in a meaningful way. The potential tech offers for teaching, learning, and authentic engagement is real and not as hard as one might think. This session will focus on how to twist a non-tech lesson into a lesson that supports curriculum while seamlessly integrating technology. We will go beyond the 20 min computer lab full of test prep and math games to real honest discussion on what it means to add technology into a lesson. “Teach This…. Not That” will help you transform your lessons and move from a traditional classroom to a 21st century learning center.

Take Classroom Involvement to the Next Level w/ Smart Boards , SMART Teachers and SMART Students!

Is the Interactive white board in your classroom/building used as a fancy overhead? Smart Boards can be used as more than just "Write and Wipe," if you know the capabilities. We often provide our teachers with the initial "where the buttons are" training for Smart boards, but they need the next step of training that shows how to take this new tool and get the most student involvement out of the technology. In this session, we will use the Smart Board© Software and simple classroom interactive principles to get students raising their hands, raising their scores, and truly interacting with the board/instruction like never before. Smart Boards+ Smart Teachers= Smart Students. Dedra is a SMART © Board Certified Trainer

Flipping Classrooms: More Valuable than Flipping Real Estate

Have you heard the new term “flipping”? Would you like to see just how it could work in your classroom? This session is presented in a mocked flipped format where you will get to see how a flipped classroom might look, as you learn the components on flipping. We will cover the basics of the flipped concept and then work as a collaborative team during the session to make a plan for all classrooms. Flipping will help you find more time for assessments and help kids think critically. Bring an open mind to this session and you’ll walk away with a whole new perspective on flipping!

The Key to Motivation- TECHNOLOGY

The students we are teaching today are digital natives who have never known a world without technology. How do you engage the multi-tasking, on-demand, Facebook generation? Learn how educators across the globe are using QR Codes, Videos, Web 2.0, podcasting, blogging, wikis and other tools to teach the students of today. We will explore many resources which can increase communication, collaboration, and engagement in your classroom.

Twitter This: Websites that make you say “COOL!”

This session is a tech lover’s dream! Come in and learn about the websites that everyone is talking about (or tweeting about). No theory, lecture, or research in this session. It is an old fashion swap party. We will highlight the latest and greatest websites educators can use to teach, learn, and have fun with. You will share your favorite websites and ideas and learn everyone else’s. If you like learning…. This is the session you will not want to miss!

QR codes in the classroom , it’s too EASY!

Have you seen the little black and white 2D square boxes on posters and products? They are QR (quick Response) codes. Cell phones are everywhere, why not capitalize on them in the classroom and across the district? Simple, free QR generators allow you to create codes that can link to just about anything-YouTube, text message, voice recordings, email, URLs, and so much more. This is not something only the tech nerds can do! It really is easy. Learn how this technology can be used to engage students in a variety of learning activities and resources, such as test reminders, checking answers, scavenger hunts, providing supplemental materials or tutorials, promoting school or class events, and more. Get the attention of the iGeneration, use a simple techie tool: QR Codes.

Student Voice and Your Curriculum- A Powerful Combination

Giving your students a voice is a powerful tool in creating learning environments that students of the “Youtube generation” respond to. Student’s who create authentic assessments using video creations will retain information and tie it to previous knowledge. Teachers can harness the excitement and energy of the viral videos and tie them to the curriculum. Come in and learn easy ways to make this concept reality in your classroom.

Web 2.0 Tools of Classroom Collaboration

The next generation of the web is the new web 2.0. Collaboration websites cater to the on- demand, video game generation of today. See how these sites can work in the classroom. Move your class into the future and out of the past with Voice Thread, Wikis, Blogs, and the ever-popular QR Codes. See how you can learn, teach, and assess student learning all with this and many more great websites.

Videocasting: The Nuts and Bolts of It

Now that you understand what vodcasting is and how it can be used in the classroom, come in and make one! We will use the computers and free software to create a simple vodcast. You don’t have to be a techie to make this happen. Learn the ins and outs of the vodcasting basics and Audacity software and be ready to enhance your curriculum with

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