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.