About Me

Not only do I write this wonderfully entertaining and informative blog, but I am also the Educational Technology Coach serving both Champaign Central and Champaign Centennial High Schools in Champaign, Illinois. My education career actually began as a music teacher, specifically in Choral music education. I received my Bachelors of Music Education from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign in 2007. My first teaching job was for the Gibson City-Melvin-Sibley School District as a Choir Director for GCMS Middle School and GCMS High School until 2010. I then attended Illinois State University from which I received a Master's of Fine Art Degree for Choral Music Education in 2012. In 2013, I was hired as the Vocal Music Teacher at Franklin Middle School in Champaign, IL.

During my time at Franklin Middle School, I became passionate about the use of technology in the music classroom, as my classroom featured a unique blend of acoustic instruments, electronic instruments, and a class set of chromebooks. Using these tools in concert, I was able to create a Project-Based Curriculum designed to engage students with varying musical abilities with a student centered approach that allowed for individual student growth to be measured. With the help of technology tools, I was able to create an environment that fostered curiosity and appreciation for all types of musical aptitudes from music history, to music composition, and everything inbetween.

It was at this time that I indulged my curiosity of meaningful technology integration by beginning an educational technology graduate degree program. I received my second Master's Degree, a Master's of Arts in Educational Technology from Concordia University Chicago in 2015.

In 2016 I accepted my current position and created this blog as a resource for my teachers, as well as teachers everywhere, to continue their journey toward technological fluency. In the same year, I also received an Endorsement as a Technology Specialist for Grades 9-12.

As I continue to grow into this position, I am glad to be serving the Champaign School District and the greater teaching community with every post I create and every solution I find. I hope that I will continue to provide opportunities for educators to consider not only tools that will increase efficiency with teacher and student time, but more importantly spark ideas that transform the classroom into a space that continues to evoke higher cognitive development and improved social skills for our students.

My Availability for Unit 4 Staff
I will be in the 2nd Floor Computer Lab at Central on Tuesdays and Thursdays and the Media Center at Centennial on Wednesdays and Fridays. Contact me any of the ways below or just stop by and see me.

Division of Responsibilities

With technology in Unit 4, there is always some level of confusion about who you should contact for support. Hopefully this will provide a bit more clarity:

Person & Role
Support Role
Method to Contact

Ben Kelly
  Ed Tech Coach
  • Guiding you to the right tool or how to use the tool.
  • Co-Teach using digital tools
  • Liaison to the T&L Coordinators
  • Coaching sessions on how to integrate technology into instructional practice/pedagogy(cycle or 1-time)
  • SAMR Model questions/advice
  • Point person for questions/help related to tools used in Curriculum Adoption Cycle (Digital Textbook Tools)

Google Voice (Call/Text) 773-417-6041
Robert Middleton
Repairs of any kind (Hardware, Software installation, Individual Network Connectivity Issues, Printer Connectivity/Installation, etc.)
(Please don’t email anyone)
David Grove
   Tech Help Desk
Helping you or your students with login and account access issues
Call 217-351-3801 or email groveda@u4sd.org

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