Educational Technology Coach in Singapore Wins Global Innovation Award

Photo of author

( — February 2, 2016) Singapore, Singapore — Singapore American School (SAS) educational technology coach Tara Linney won the 2015-16 21st Century Learning International Global Innovation Award (sponsored by Pearson) for Innovative Educational Coaching, beating out hundreds of educators from 26 countries.

Linney was chosen as this year’s winner for her case study work on how coding impacts student learning, and her collaborative work with multiple school departments in launching iTime, a student-led inquiry project throughout all of fourth grade.

Initial results from her coding research show that students involved in coding can pick up certain geometry principles faster than their non-coding peers. Linney’s research also showed that students developed both academic and social skills such as resilience, iteration, collaboration, and communication.

“We’ve been able to link the learning of coding to an increase in student progression in geometry concepts such as the concept of angles, subtraction and division. This opens the door for us to explore how coding can impact other core subjects like history, English, the arts, and world language acquisition,” Linney said.

Linney spent a summer with Tynker, a creative computing platform offering self-paced online coding courses for children, working to connect their curriculum to the US Common Core. At Tynker, she learned how to moderate student learning through collaborative and meaningful computer programming activities.

Elementary school EdTech Coaches, instructional coaches, and librarians incorporate student-led inquiry projects into the curriculum as part of the school’s 2020 strategic plan.

“We are thrilled that Tara has been recognized for her work in moving the school forward in the critical areas of personalization and inquiry for students and teachers. The role of technology coach is a tenet of our professional learning strategy at SAS, and Tara’s work is evidence of the high level impact it can have on student learning,” said technology director Jason Cone.

This collaboration has led to deepened learning and empowerment among students while also providing professional development opportunities for teachers.

“By exposing students to coding activities at a young age, we’re preparing them for success in a future filled with possibility,” Linney said. “When we give students a choice in what and how they want to learn, we’re also giving them a voice.”

About Singapore American School

Singapore American School (SAS) is an independent, non-profit, coeducational, college preparatory day school offering a US curriculum with an international perspective for students in preschool through grade twelve. SAS has the largest Advanced Placement program outside of the United States, is fully accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) in the United States, and offers the American High School Diploma at the senior level. Established in 1956, the school primarily serves the US and international expatriate communities of Singapore.

Singapore American School

40 Woodlands Street 41,
Singapore, Singapore 738547