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A pioneer in the field of educational social networking, Dembo was among the first to realize the power of blogging, podcasting, Twitter, and other Web 2.0 technologies in connecting educators and creating professional learning communities. 
Steve Dembo served for ten years as Discovery Education’s Director of Learning Communities and led their Innovation and Strategy team.   He is the co-author of the book Untangling the Web: 20 Tools to Power Up Your Teaching. The National School Board Association named him one of 2010’s “Twenty to Watch,” a list honoring individuals finding innovative ways to use technology to increase classroom learning. In 2013 he began serving the Skokie/Morton Grove District 69 as a member of the School Board. Dembo is a course designer and adjunct professor for Wilkes University where he serves as class instructor for the Internet Tools for Teaching course within the Instructional Media degree program.
Steve Dembo is also a dynamic speaker on the capabilities of social networking, the power of educational technologies and Web 2.0 tools, and the ability of digital content to empower teachers to improve student achievement. He has delivered keynotes and featured presentations at dozens of conferences globally including ISTE, TCEA, FETC, MACUL, GaETC, METC, CUE, ICE, TEDxCorpus Christi, #140Edu, EduWeb, .EDU and the Social Media Masters Summit. Dembo was also a featured panelist at Nokia Open Labs as an expert on mobile device integration in education.



Discover how to create a culture of innovation and spark creativity in your schools and classrooms. This session will explore how districts are rethinking education and enacting systemic, long-term change.  Both bottom-up and top-down, we’ll demonstrate meaningful ways to avoid falling into the trap of knee-jerk solutions that rarely push our school systems forward.   From design thinking to strategic planning, you’ll walk away with concrete steps to launching your school into the future!

If your definition of digital literacy is more than a year old, then it’s probably out-of- date already. We’ll explore what literacy in the digital world means for our students and how to cultivate it in our students. From digital storytelling to communicating through memes, you’ll be amazed by the creative ways educators are fostering innovation in classrooms.

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Who wants to be the line leader? Ask that in any elementary room and every hand would go flying into the air. And yet, schools seem to be terrified of being the first ones to adopt new ideas in technology. Somewhere between kindergarten and our last faculty meeting, the role of line leader seems to have gone from the best job on the board to a position that’s just a little terrifying. When did we become so terrified of being a trailblazer? During this presentation, we’ll explore the risks, benefits, and transformations that can occur when a school embraces risk and is willing to step up and be first.

We live in an era that has seen the democratization of knowledge, the flattening of the earth, and the rise of wikinomics. The amount of information online keeps increasing while the barriers to accessing it continue to decrease. 21st century students aren’t merely products of these shifts, they are the instigators at the forefront of the next digital revolution. Are you prepared for students that live online in a state of transparency, defining ‘private’ as only being seen by a few thousand people? In order to guide students to safely navigate this new digital frontier, teachers have to learn to speak the same language. Thankfully, thousands of teachers are giving free lessons every hour of every day. While the tools may evolve at a dizzying pace, educators who create a personal learning network will always have the resources they need to stay ahead of the curve. Come learn how teachers worldwide have banded together to become their own best source of professional development…. and lost their digital accent along the way.

Teachers used to threaten that if students didn’t behave, it would go down on their permanent record. While there was no such record in the past, there is now. Students are leaving a trail of their online activities behind them that will last far longer than they ever might expect. This presentation delves into specific actions that students are engaging in now that have long term consequences for them and how we, as educators, can guide them to the right path.

Why is everyone focusing on 21st century skills? That skill-set is over a decade old! Rather than looking back, we will look to the future and identify technology trends that educators need to know about. From flying cars to nanotech, we’ll explore the bleeding edge of technology and how to begin incorporating it into classrooms today.

Web 2.0 technologies break down the barriers to publishing teacher and student created content on the internet. Schools that do so are finding the benefits reach far beyond the classroom walls. By making learning transparent, many schools are creating a strong sense of community while offering their students the opportunity to collaborate with others on a global level. See how some districts have embraced these new technologies while still maintaining high standards and keeping their students safe.


3D printing is one of the hottest technologies in education right now, but so rarely is it done well in schools.   In this session, we’ll break down the process of purchasing, designing, and printing, as well as setting up your space to truly foster innovation and creativity.   From parts and plastic to projects and curriculum, we’ll cover everything you need to get started in the amazing world of 3D printing!

PD doesn’t have to be so mind-numbing that it zombifies attendees. We’ll explore some innovative ways to share and build ideas collaboratively and put the power of professional development back in the hands of educators.

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(formerly titled High Tech Without the High Price)

Thanks to the shift to web based apps, educators have an incredible array of resources to use with their students. During this session, we’ll explore simple (and free) online apps that can be used with any computer, in any class, at any grade level. We’ll focus on sites that can be used immediately, providing students a multitude of options for demonstrating their learning digitally

In this fast paced session, we’ll explore gadgets and online sites that will amaze and delight both you and your students. These won’t be the resources guaranteed to raise test scores, but they WILL be the ones your students will beg to use!

Over 4 billion videos are viewed on YouTube every day… and some of them don’t even feature cats on Roombas! In this session, we’ll explore how we can steal storytelling techniques from our favorite viral videos and learn nontraditional digital storytelling models that foster creativity throughout the curriculum. From elaborate viral videos to 360 degree action to virtual reality, we’ll also take a deeper dive into what’s NEXT for the YouTube generation… and how you can jump in on the action today.

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AR, VR and QR are the hottest #EduBuzzWords right now, but is there any substance behind the pixels? We’ll separate the sizzle from the steak and talk about meaningful ways VR will impact education.

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Think you know every web tool out there? Think again! We’ll demonstrate new twists on “vintage” sites that you may have thought you knew, as well as the best of the year’s new releases. Remember, it’s not the tool, it’s how you use it to transform learning.

Social media is redefining the relationship schools have with their students and communities inside the classroom as well as outside of it. Explore ways to leverage social media as a communication tool and create a powerful marketing force for your district through creating student, parent, and teacher evangelists.

Web 2.0 has brought online versions of most of the programs you use on a daily basis. Alternatives to Word, PowerPoint, Photoshop and others are available for free! Based on the book of the same name, we will demonstrate the sites every educator should know about and how you can use them to power up your own teaching.

The world of Web2.0 isn’t just transforming middle and secondary schools, it’s also having a profound impact on early childhood and early elementary classrooms! Instead of showcasing your student’s work on a bulletin board, use it to connect and collaborate with a global audience. See how innovative classroom teachers are using free technologies to improve communication, impact student learning, and above all… make learning exciting!

No blog? No podcast? No problem! The world of Web 2.0 has something for everyone, but it can be a rather overwhelming pool to dive in to. We’ll take the absolute beginner and give them a complete digital makeover. This practical, non-linear, hands on session will demonstrate exactly how to get started in the world of online Web 2.0, which sites educators absolutely must have a presence on, and tricks for avoiding information overload. Enter a newbie, leave a Web 2.0 guru!

In an era when student missteps can linger on the internet for years, and stories of predators and cyberbullies dominate the news, there are plenty of reasons for schools to tighten their firewalls. But is banning really a viable response? How do we help students learn to leverage the powerful new tools that are available to them? What policies do we set that ensure that learning and safety goes hand in hand? See how some districts have embraced new technologies while still maintaining high standards and keeping their students safe.




Every conference, every district, every event is unique… and should be treated that way.

“Steve Dembo is one of those unique individuals with the ability to recognize, decode, and utilize emerging technologies, and also talk about them.”


“Steve is a fantastically humorous and motivational speaker. He has a talent for inspiring his audiences to go above and beyond and try to make a difference in their world.”


“Steve has an incredible rapport with the educational community and is known as a thought leader, innovator, and big picture thinker. He understands all levels of education while also comprehending the dynamics of the emerging 2.0 Web. Steve is a visionary and brings life, energy, excitement, and professionalism to everything he does.”





Whether you’re interested in a high energy, informational and yet entertaining presenter, or a partner to help bring about strategic change in your district or educational company, I’d love to hear from you.   Or just drop me a line and say hello!