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Teacher Appreciation Week 2024: Unruly Educator Award Nominations are in!

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Teacher Appreciation Week is only a couple weeks away, which means it’s almost our favorite time of the year!

We 💗our Unruly Educators, and we are excited to announce the return of our Unruly Educator Awards to honor and recognize all of the innovative and dedicated educators in the Unruly community. 

This year’s awards also include two new categories: Unruliest School and Unruliest Mathematician. Our Unruliest Mathematician award is a special recognition for teachers utilizing Unruly Math to reinforce K-5 math concepts through physically active play! 

Check out our list of nominees below and show your appreciation by voting for an Unruly educator below.

Vote Here by May 3


Most Resilient Educator

Mary Boardwine, Library Media Specialist, Cloverdale Elementary

Faced with some initial challenges with implementing Unruly Code, Mary and her students are now crushing it with Splats! In just one month, they used over 2,000 blocks of code to make some of their own Unruly creations!  

Marty Cryer, Computer Technology Teacher, Wells Elementary School

Marty leads the Splats charge at her school and exemplifies innovation! Beyond Splats, Marty is always introducing students to new technology and tools to enhance their learning and foster creativity. She partners with the Unruly team often to provide feedback and make Splats better each year. 

Eric Potthaste, PE Teacher, Robert Lee Frost School

Eric is leveling up PE by combining math with active play in physical education. Since integrating tech into his PE class was newer to him, he did not have a screen to show the Splats app on, so he convinced his principal to purchase an inflatable screen he can use. Go Eric!

Unruliest Advocate 

Shaquanda Day, Art Teacher, KIPP DC - The Learning Center

Shaquanda has been a strong advocate for Splats since before starting a membership at her school. Her energy for implementing Splats really pushed their use at TLC. 

Rebecca Bennett, STEM/PE Teacher, Browning Pearce Elementary School

Becky is an advocate of Splats amongst her students and throughout the whole school. She gets her students involved in all our competitions, and they often blow the competition away! She encourages her students to dive into coding and see each challenge as an opportunity to learn. And let’s not forget, she let her students dunk her in a dunk tank for reaching two million stomps in Go Bananas!

Amanda Mangione, Grade Level Teacher, Burton Ettinger

Amanda always makes room in her classroom for innovative projects, like designing Unruly games for Splat Tank and Sports Center worthy cheers for Stomp Madness. She knows the impact that creative learning experiences like Splats can have and exudes contagious enthusiasm along the way! She shares her knowledge of Splats with other educators and helps them get involved.

Amanda Ruhe, Director of Technology, Dutchess Day School

Amanda is an avid Splats advocate for her students and in the ed tech community as well. In addition to using Splats to code Unruly games at Dutchess Day School, Amanda used Splats for a presentation at a local conference to teach other educators about combining coding and active play.

Christine Danhoff, Technology Integration Specialist, North Point ESC

Christine is a true Splats champion. She introduces new teachers to Unruly Splats, finds innovative ways to integrate Splats into core subjects, and was one of the first educators to implement Unruly Math with her students! 

Unruliest Library Media Specialist 

Patty Authement, Oakshire Elementary

Patty is a strong user of Splats in her media center. She focuses on building the basics with her students from the coding tutorials to gradually getting them to produce their own games! 

Kristine Woods, Greene-Hills School

Kristine is a Library Media Specialist who loves to code with her students. They used over 3,000 blocks of code in February alone!

Angela Brown, South Euless Elementary

Angela always gets her students involved with Unruly competitions, inspiring them to find joy in coding and computer science! Check out her students’ latest Unruliest creations here

Unruliest PE Teacher 

Richard Green, General Stanford Elementary

Richard has a strong partnership with the STEM program at GSE. Together, they engage students in active Splats activities and get students excited about what is possible through coding! See how he is integrating Splats into PE here.

David Kober, Katie Harper-Wright Elementary

David is a Splats specialist! He has developed innovative ways to use Splats for his PE lessons including creating a way to hang them on a wall for throwing units. He is also constantly seeking new ideas to help students code their own activities that they play in his class. 

Giselle Paredes, PS/MS 29 Melrose School

Giselle has been a wonderful addition to the Splats community. She is a PE teacher who isn’t afraid to get Unruly! Playing pre-built activities from the app as well as creating her own activities, students are Splatting their way through PE. 

Sarah Pici, AJ Schmidt Elementary School

Sarah enjoys giving her students the opportunity to engage with computer science while staying physically active! Her students crushed the competition in Stomp Madness 2024, and looking ahead, she is excited about incorporating more coding into the PE space. 

Most Innovative Educator 

Summer Marshall, CS Integration Coach, Ecker Hill Middle School

Summer is on a mission to get Splats into as many different kinds of classrooms as possible! She actively works with her teachers and Unruly to come up with unique games that are specific to each teacher’s needs. See how Ecker Hill Middle School students are doing cross-cirricular coding here.

Brian Miller, STEAM Teacher , Norwayne Local

Brian is always using Splats to increase engagement and add fun to his coding lessons. From the start he has been a great user, using the activities in the app, coding with his students, and getting his students involved in Unruly events. Most recently, his middle school students coded and pitched their own Unruly games in our Hour of Code event, Splat Tank!

Jeff Monteith, Extended Learning Program/AP Coordinator, New Hampton Community Schools

Jeff makes it a point to introduce Splats to as many students AND educators at his school as much as possible. During one event, he placed the splats in his hallway so everyone who passed by could interact with them. He also led his students through creating their own innovative Splat games in this year’s Splat Tank! Jeff’s students won this event and their game made its way into our Unruly app!

Peggy Sieber, 7th Grade Science Teacher, Central Middle School

Peggy finds innovative ways to incorporate Splats into her seventh grade science units each year. This year, when learning about body systems, she had her students come up with a Splats training regimen for fictional athletes. Students had to code their training regimens on Splats and explain how the training impacted the athlete’s body systems. Students came up with some awesome ideas!

Ruthmarie Adams, Locekport Elementary

Ruthmarie has worked closely with the Unruly team to learn how to code Splats, so she could start her own Unruly coding club. She focuses on creating social emotional learning opportunities through Splats to help students develop the SEL skills they need in a fun and engaging way. She also empowers the students she works with by helping them lead classmates through Splats games.  

Unruliest Newcomer

Dana Hilmoe, Grade Level Teacher, St. Elizabeth Seton Catholic

Dana was up and running with Unruly Math within a day of our initial meeting! Her excitement for bringing fun and innovative ways to students to practice their math skills and form positive associations with math is evident. See how Dana is combining math with active play👀

Elijah Ortiz, 5th Grade Math Teacher, Concourse Village Elementary

Although our relationship with Concourse Village Elementary is longstanding, Elijah is new to the Unruly community! From piloting Unruly Math in his school to leading the Stomp Madness charge at Concourse, Elijah is helping bring Splats to the next level at Concourse. 

Nicole Hawthorne, Grand Caillou Elementary

New to Splats this year, Nicole got all of her students involved in Stomp Madness and didn’t stop there! From principals to local law enforcement, Nicole got everyone involved in the Splatting and showed her students how fun computer science can be. Take a look at Grand Caillou students combining coding and active play here👏

Yoni Sternberg, Community School Director, PS/MS 29 Melrose School

Yoni and PS/MS 29 Melrose School have only been using Splats since January, but he is already making a huge Unruly impact. His students recently conducted research to answer the question, "Can coding in physical education class increase student engagement?" and recently presented their findings at a STEM expo. They did so well that they have advanced to the next round which will be at Yankee Stadium!

Traci Morihara, Curriculum Coordinator, Hawaii Baptist Academy

Traci is amazing! She has led her teachers through implementation and they are ensuring Splats are used often. Sixth graders at Hawaii Baptist Academy are adding to their coding skills through Unruly Splats, and their first and second grade students will jump into coding this summer during their STEAM enrichment camp. 

Unruliest Techie

Elizabeth Moreland, Instructional Coach, Adair-Casey Elementary

Elizabeth has used Splats with a variety of grade levels to sharpen their block coding skills and make learning fun! From fourth grade students completing a Valentine’s Day guided coding activity video to using Splats to increase engagement in second grade ELA, Elizabeth has led the Splats implementation at her school like a pro!

Laura Kennedy, Tech Integration Specialist, HRCE

Laura is always finding creative ways to incorporate Splats into the school day. From Race in Place in math to PE relay races to creative coding activities, Laura always has an idea for Splats. She has encouraged so many schools to join in on the Splatting in Nova Scotia and gets students excited about all the possibilities with coding! You can see some of the ways Laura does cross-curricular computer science here.

Brian Miller, STEAM, Norwayne Local

Brian is always using Splats to increase engagement and add fun to his lessons. From the start he has been a great user, using the activities in the app, coding with his students, and participating in Unruly events.

Michael Fricano, Technology Integration Specialist, 'Iolani School

Michael embraces innovation and creative technology with open arms! Since joining the Unruly community, Michael has provided great feedback that has helped shape what the Unruly app looks like today. Most recently, he is combining AI with Splats to help students create and debug programs. Check it out here!

Unruliest Principal

Craig Vaughn, Principal, Springfield Elementary 

Craig Vaughn is taking his school to the next level by setting a goal of incorporating computer science into all classrooms within the school. He embraces out of the box thinking, supports his staff through his strong leadership, and fits the Unruly mold! 

Alexa Sorden, Principal, Concourse Village Elementary School

Alexa is a long time Splats user and believes in the power of active, recess style coding activities in her school. Not only are they great advocates for Unruly Code, they were one of the first schools to be an Unruly Math Early Adopter.

Unruliest District Innovators

Ursula Martin & Allyson Chappell, District Tech Department, Mobile County Public Schools

Ursula and Allyson have gone above and beyond in their support of Unruly Splats. Their belief in the value of STEM learning has allowed many schools throughout Mobile the opportunity to join the Unruly community. 

Antionette Johnson, Director of Curriculum, East St. Louis School District 189

After meeting with PE teacher David Kober at Katie Harper Wright, Antionette decided to bring Splats into four other elementary schools and two middle schools. This decision will allow other students within East St Louis the opportunity to have positive STEM experiences through combining coding with active play! 

Grant Toyooka, District Resource Teacher, Hawaii Central District

Grant continues to be a Splats advocate throughout his district! This year he helped organize a Splats PD in Hawaii with the Unruly team that welcomed teachers and school administrators in surrounding schools and districts to come experience Splats firsthand. 

Laura Pinto, Middle School STEM Teacher Specialist , Anne Arundel County Public Schools

Laura is leading the Splats charge in Anne Arundel this year! This year, she has organized two in-person Splats PD & workshops for the STEM magnet schools to increase teacher comfortability with integrating computer science into the school day. 

Unruliest School

Adair-Casey Elementary, Iowa

For this year’s Stomp Madness, all grade levels in the school got involved! From new teachers trying their first Splats lessons to students diving into coding, Adair-Casey Elementary students reached over 135,000 stomps and over 1,000 blocks of code in just five days!

PS/MS 20 Melrose School, New York

Starting in January, they are relatively new to Splats, but have already made a big impact. Students recently conducted research to answer the question, "Can coding in physical education class increase student engagement?" and recently presented their findings at a STEM expo. They did so well that they have advanced to the next round which will be at Yankee Stadium!

Kennedy Community School, Minnesota

Kennedy Community School is always up for an Unruly challenge! This year, they have participated in almost all of the Unruly events. Most notably, students at Kennedy Community School created their own original, innovative Splats games as part of this year’s Splat Tank and pitched their games to a panel of Unruly judges. 

Putnam County Elementary School, Georgia

Computer science teacher Molly Reece and principal Scott Sauls are an unstoppable duo who know how to incorporate Unruliness into the school day! Molly gets her students engaged with computer science by making Unruly events a full school ordeal and showing them how much fun is possible through computer science. Take a look at their story here 🥳

Unruliest Mathematician

Emily Downard, Academy Adventures Midtown

Emily is a math pioneer in every sense of the word. She takes a unique approach (even beyond Unruly Math) to engage her students in their math learning.

Dana Hilmoe, Second Grade Teacher, St Elizabeth Seton Catholic School

Dana took Unruly Math and ran! Just one day after receiving her set of Splats, Dana dove into math games with her students, without needing any training from the Unruly team. She is a math trail-blazer! 

Elijah Ortiz, Math Teacher, Concourse Village Elementary

Not only has Elijah used Unruly Math in his classroom, he has many other great math strategies up his sleeve! From math relay races, Three Act Tasks, to tape diagrams for problem solving, Elijah is passionate about helping students become stronger math thinkers. He has also worked closely with the Unruly team to provide feedback that will help shape the future of Unruly Math. Hear some of Elijah's math teaching tips here.

Christine Danhoff, Tech. Int. Spec., North Point ESC

Christine is a true Splats champion. Even before being one of the first teachers to implement Unruly Math, Christine used our Unruly Code product to combine coding, movement, and math in her lessons. She knows how to make math engaging for students!

Vote Here By May 3

Now that you have seen all the talent the Unruly Community holds, you can vote for your top picks!

Voting ends on Friday, May 3, so invite your friends, family, and colleagues ASAP! The winners of the 2024 Unruly Educator Awards will be announced May 9 (LIVE) on Twitter!

A final congratulations to all the nominees and let the voting begin!

Unruly Studios makers of Unruly Splats, programmable, stompable floor tiles that help kids learn fundamental coding skills through recess-style play. Best for elementary and middle school students from PE to science or coding class, a great addition to the classroom for active STEM coding and play!

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