Learning through Leading Podcast

The Learning through Leading podcast connects classroom educators with those who are moving the needle to help kids in effective and innovative ways.

The podcast is hosted by Dr. Nick Sutton and Matt Jacobson and produced by the Learning Technology Center. Join Nick and Matt as they explore innovative ideas and talk with educational leaders that are shaping K-12 education.

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Holly Pantle on the Role of Libraries and Technology

Holly Pantle is the incoming Technology Director for the Charleston (IL) school district. In this episode, Holly discusses the changing role of the Library Information Specialist, how she has supported students and teachers during remote learning, and some of the challenges she plans to tackle in her new role.

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Podcast: LaVonna Roth SHINEs!

Author, brain research expert, consultant, trainer, and teacher LaVonna Roth shares her thoughts on culture and climate in our schools. LaVonna also shares some hands-on minds-on ideas to use during remote learning activities.

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Podcast: Transitioning to Remote Learning with Mike Lubelfeld

Mike Lubelfeld discusses his district’s transition from in-person learning to e-learning and then to remote learning. In this candid interview, Mike talks about the things that went well, the things they could have done better, and the phenomenal work that his staff is doing to support learners wherever they are.

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Podcast: Adapting E-Learning to Remote Learning

Learn how two school districts, one suburban and one rural, are adjusting their existing e-learning plans to a longer-term remote learning situation. In this episode, we discuss the surprising commonalities in their approaches to adapting their existing e-learning plans to our current reality of longer-term remote learning. 

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Podcast: Remote Learning with Adam & Alex Valencic

Adam Valencic and Alex Valencic offer some insights into their experiences in remote learning and online learning. Adam Valencic is an instructional designer at Lindenwood University in Missouri. Alex Valencic, is the Coordinator for 21st Century Teaching and Learning for t

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Podcast: Jodi Scott Discusses Remote Learning

Regional Superintendent Jodi Scott was part of the team that created the Illinois Remote Learning Recommendations. In this special episode, Jodi returns to our show to discuss the differences between Illinois’ current Remote Learning Recommendations and the earlier legislation. Listen as Jodi provides critical clarifications and insights.

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Podcast: Luxblox with Mike Acerra

Heather and Mike Acerra are the educational entrepreneurs behind Luxblox, allowing students to explore science, engineering, and design in almost any setting. In this episode, Mike tells us about how Luxblox can be used in classrooms to support science, technology, engineering, the arts, and mathematics in almost any learning activity.

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Podcast: Innovation & Self-Care with Jen Leban

Jen Leban talks with the Learning through Leading podcast hosts about her Google Innovator Project and the importance of self-care and checking in on our friends during these unprecedented times.

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Learning Online with Ben Sondgeroth

Ben Sondgeroth, a Regional Educational Technology Coordinator for the LTC, joins the Learning through Leading hosts at a critical time in Illinois’ history to speak about leveraging video in online learning.

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Podcast: Janelle McLaughlin on Student-Driven Learning and Coaching

Janelle McLaughlin discusses the importance of student-driven learning on this week’s episode.

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Meet the Hosts

Dr. Nick Sutton

Nick Sutton is in his 13th year as an educator, and always considered himself a “middle school guy.” While a former 6th, 7th, and 8th grade teacher he then transitioned into building principal and now a district superintendent. Nick earned his doctorate from Western Illinois University researching the correlational relationship between instructional strategies and school climate. He is the proud recipient of the 2018 Western Illinois University Young Alumni Award, 2016 Illinois Principal Association Western Region Principal of the Year, and has published articles within different avenues in the education field.

Nick’s primary passion in public education has become professional development and research within best practices. He has two perfect daughters, and loves to participate within all of their activities when he is not working. Nick can be reached through his Twitter account @DrNickSutton – and visit his blog.

Matt Jacobson

Matt Jacobson is the Online Learning Specialist for the Learning Technology Center of Illinois. Matt develops engaging synchronous and asynchronous online and in-person training opportunities for educators and administrators. He also provides coaching, consulting, and training services for schools developing online and blended learning activities for students and staff. Matt provides administration and coaching on a variety of Learning Management Systems and many other online tools.

Matt provides almost three decades of experience in helping students and schools innovate. Prior to working with the LTC Matt was a middle school consultant and has worked as a teacher, administrator, coach, and trainer for preK-12 schools in central Illinois.