James A.  Bellanca

James A. Bellanca

James A. Bellanca is nationally recognized as a practical 21st century skills and deeper learning innovator who helps educators make project- and problem-based learning ready to go on the next school day.

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James A. Bellanca

James A. Bellanca is nationally recognized as a practical 21st century skills and deeper learning innovator who provides educators with the how-to knowledge to make project- and problem-based learning ready to go on the next school day. He is a senior fellow with the Partnership for 21st Century Skills and editor of their innovative online P21Blogazine. He is the 2013 recipient of the Malcolm Knowles Award for lifetime contribution to the field of self-directed learning from the International Society for Self-Directed Learning.

With his extensive experience as a classroom English and language arts teacher, alternative school director, professional developer, intermediate service center director, business owner, and not-for-profit executive, Jim has developed expertise for transforming mandates, such as the Common Core State Standards, into practical classroom tools that enrich instruction and engage students.

He is executive director of the Illinois Consortium for 21st Century Schools and lead trainer for Mind Quest: Project-Based Learning in the 21st Century Classroom, which helps schools with large English learner populations and children of color/poverty adopt the Project-Based Learning model of instruction.

Jim has worked with educational leaders in Chicago, Los Angeles, Cleveland, New York, Illinois, West Virginia, New Jersey, Michigan, Australia, New Zealand, Norway, and Israel. His specialty is the application of group investigation and inquiry models of learning as the primary methods for assisting school leaders and teachers adopt 21st century models of instruction. His aim is to assist school districts to design, implement, and assess programs that promote 21st century skills to increase academic performance among all children, including high-risk student populations.

Presentation titles by James A. Bellanca

  • Solving the Puzzle, Changing the Paradigm
  • Project- and Problem-Based Learning
  • 21st Century Skills, Common Core Standards, and Deeper Learning Assessment
  • The 21st Century School Leader: Making Practical Sense of the Common Core Standards
  • Effective Teaching in the 21st Century Classroom
  • Inquiry Driven Instruction: The 21st Century Paradigm in Any Deeper-Learning Classroom
  • Connect the Dots: Rigor, Relevance, and Results for 21st Century Students
  • 21st Century Skills: What? Why? How?
  • 21st Century Skills and Schools: The Practical Way
  • Common Core State Standards: A Practical Tool for 21st Century Achievement and Deeper Learning
  • Formative Assessment: A Major Instructional Tool in the Common Core Classroom
  • Embedding Critical and Creative Thinking in the Classroom for Deeper Learning
  • Collaboration and Communication: Linking Projects Beyond School Walls
  • Technology for ELA Instruction: Practical Tools for Student Engagement
  • 21st Century Principals: How Are They Unique?
  • Assessing Teacher Performance: A Focus on Instruction
  • Developing Teacher Excellence

“Jim did an excellent job. He brought along our entire admin team with these important 21st century conversations.”

Mark Davey, superintendent, Gates Chili Central School District, New York