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Shawnee Cohn, Discovery Education

— No-Cost Virtual and In Person Event will Provide Attendees Effective Ways to Integrate Digital Media into Instructional Practice —

Silver Spring, Md. (March 26, 2015) Discovery Education, the leading provider of digital content and professional development for K-12 classrooms, invites teachers and administrators worldwide to participate in the upcoming Spring VirtCon on Saturday, April 25.  This no-cost, day-long professional development event offers both virtual and face-to-face opportunities for educators to learn actionable tactics and strategies for deepening the integration of digital media into classroom instruction.

Among the scheduled keynote presenters are:

  • Dr. Todd Wirt, Assistant Superintendent for Academics at North Carolina’s Wake County Public School System. Dr. Wirt’s presentation will explore how the digital transformation of classrooms worldwide has given students many opportunities to experience an environment of choice. With increased freedom and creativity, failure is naturally going to become a part of the process. Dr. Wirt will share with participants his recommendations for designing classrooms that foster creativity and embrace failure.
  • Don Levy, Former Senior Vice President of Marketing for Sony Pictures, Faculty at Boston University. Levy’s presentation will discuss how the increasing availability of digital production tools and a growing market of trained and experienced talent creates new and important opportunities to apply visual techniques to communicate, educate and develop understanding.
  • Dacia Jones, District Science Specialist at North Carolina’s Durham Public Schools. During her remarks, Jones will share her insights on how to engage students with inspiring activities that raise expectations in the classroom, include students in the planning process, and tie authentic learning to standards.

Additional presentations during the Spring Virtcon will explore a variety of timely education topics.  Among the scheduled presentations are:

  • 6 Ways to Show What You Know, presented by Dennis Grice, K-8 Technology Teacher at St. John’s Lutheran School in California. During his session, Grice will demonstrate practical ways to give students ownership of their own learning that empower them to use their creativity to ‘show what they know.’
  • It’s About Learning, Not the Device, presented by Rachel Yurk, ‎Instructional Technology Specialist at Cedarburg School District in Wisconsin. This session will explore instructional models that support the effective integration of technology into instruction.  Educators will learn more about valuable digital resources and how to implement them to make the classroom environment stronger, while increasing learning and motivation.
  • Building Community Through Creativity, delivered by Tracy Carpenter, Technology Integration Specialist at the Archdiocese of Baltimore in Maryland. In this session, participants will focus on infusing creativity into the classroom to create environments that transcend geographic limitations and provide spaces for students to create, make mistakes, collaborate and solve problems.
  • Farm to Table: A SAMR Immersion Lesson, delivered by Matt Monjan, Vice President of Partnerships at Discovery Education. During this session, Monjan will lead a Farm to Table transdisciplinary lesson through the lens of the Substitution Augmentation Modification Redefinition (SAMR) Model, which helps educators infuse technology in teaching and learning.

“Previous VirtCons empowered me with a wealth of strategies, tactics and resources that I have used to create even more dynamic lessons for my students. This annual event has helped me stay on the cutting edge of effective technology use in the classroom,” said Sandi Dennis, Library/Media Specialist at Westchester Elementary in Georgia’s City Schools of Decatur. “I encourage my colleagues nationwide to register to participate in this no cost event today.”

Discovery Education is also encouraging educators to create local face-to-face events at which they can convene with their peers, participate in the online events and discuss and workshop the online presentations.  For more information about the 2015 Spring VirtCon, including details on registration, online and in person events, and hosting local events, visit  Use the hashtag #SpringVirtCon to follow along with this event on Twitter.

“Discovery Education is pleased to once again offer the VirtCon as a professional learning opportunity for educators around the world to connect, collaborate and grow their practice,” said Lance Rougeux, Vice President of Learning Communities and Instructional Implementation for Discovery Education.  “This is an ideal experience for educators who want to learn new strategies for transforming their classrooms or schools into dynamic digital learning environments to support the success of their students. I am looking forward to an inspiring event and invite educators worldwide to attend.”

To learn more about Discovery Education’s initiatives and services, visit

About Discovery Education
Discovery Education is the global leader in standards-based digital content and professional development for K-12, transforming teaching and learning with award-winning digital textbooks, multimedia content that supports the implementation of Common Core, professional development, assessment tools, and the largest professional learning community of its kind.  Available in over half of all U.S. schools, community colleges and in 50 countries around the world, Discovery Education partners with districts, states and like-minded organizations to captivate students, empower teachers, and transform classrooms with customized solutions that accelerate academic achievement. Discovery Education is powered by Discovery Communications (NASDAQ: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK), the number one nonfiction media company in the world. Explore the future of education at