About Gary

Very Short Bio

Since 1982, Dr. Gary Stager has helped school educators around the world embrace computational technology as an intellectual laboratory, vehicle for self-expression, and window onto a world of possibilities for amplifying the potential of each student in preparation for an uncertain future. All of his work is rooted in the Piagetian notion that “knowledge is a consequence of experience.” His activities with teachers and students are guided by a focus on learning-by-doing.

More complete Bio

In addition to being a popular keynote speaker at some of the world’s most prestigious education conferences, Gary Stager is a journalist, teacher educator, consultant, professor, software developer, publisher, and school administrator. An elementary teacher by training, he has taught students from preschool through doctoral studies. In 1990, Dr. Stager led professional development in the world’s first laptop schools and played a major role in the early days of online education. Gary is the founder of the Constructing Modern Knowledge summer institute for educators.

Dr. Stager is co-author of Invent To Learn – Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom, called the “bible of the maker movement in schools,” by Larry Magid of CBS and The San Jose Mercury News.

When Jean Piaget wanted to better understand how children learn mathematics, he hired Seymour Papert. When Dr. Papert wanted to create a high-tech alternative learning environment for incarcerated at-risk teens, he hired Gary Stager. This work was the basis for Gary’s doctoral dissertation and documented Papert’s most-recent institutional research project.

Dr. Stager’s work has earned a Ph.D. in Science and Mathematics Education and he collaborated on a project that won a Grammy Award. Recently, Gary was invited by Fondazione Reggio Children to lead a public seminar on education in Reggio Emilia, Italy.

Gary is also on the advisory board of the NSF-funded project, BJC4NYC: Bringing a Rigorous Computer Science Principles Course to the Largest School System in the US. Dr. Stager also maintains the world’s largest archive of text and multimedia by Seymour Papert at The Daily Papert.

Select Awards and Recognition

  • Entered into the Consortium for School Networking (CoSN) EdTech Time Capsule, the culmination of a national crowdsourcing project that sought to identify the top 25 products, people and developments that transformed education through technology over the last 25 years. (2017)
  • Keynote speaker at the 2017 WISE Conference in Doha, Qatar
  • Keynote speaker at the 2017 Transforming Education Conference for Humanity sponsored by UNESCO and the Mahatma Gandhi Institute in Visakhapatnam, India
  • CUE presented Gary with its Technology in Learning Leadership Award. (2012) Past recipients include George Lucas, Guy Kawasaki, and Marc Andreesen.
  • Tech & Learning Magazine named Gary Stager as “one of today’s leaders who are changing the landscape of edtech through innovation and leadership.” (2010)
  • Gary was the new media producer for The Brian Lynch/Eddie Palmeri Project –
    Simpatíco, 2007 Grammy Award Winner for Best Latin Jazz Album of the Year. The album also won the a similar award from the Jazz Journalists Association. Collaborator on a project by Brian Lynch which was also nominated for a Grammy Award in 2017.
  • The National School Boards Association recognized Dr. Stager with the distinction of “20 Leaders to Watch” (2007)
  • Best columnist finalist – Association of Education Publishers Distinguished Achievement Awards. (2006)
  • Converge Magazine named Gary a “shaper of our future and inventor of our destiny.” (1999)
  • 1998 recipient of the Outstanding Educator Award by the New Jersey Educational Computing Consortium

Press

Gary has appeared in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, NPR’s All Things Considered, Nature, The Chronicle of High Education, Parade Magazine, Wired, The Huffington Post, Edutopia, Scholastic Administrator, District Administration, Technology and Learning, Education Week, American School Boards Journal, California School Business Magazine, Educational Leadership, Learning and Leading with Technology, Technology and Learning, ASCD Education Update, KQED Mindshift, Converge, Logo Exchange, eSchool News, The Age (Melbourne Australia), Education HQ (Australia) Crikey (Australia), as well as public radio (US), the ABC (Australia), Canberra Times (Australia) Sunraysia Daily (Australia), and Peruvian television.

International Experience

Gary has worked, studied, or spoken in Australia, Canada, China, India, Finland, Hong Kong, Brazil, Mexico, Peru, New Zealand, Poland, England, Lithuania, Bulgaria, Spain, Costa Rica, Slovakia, France, Thailand, Italy, Austria, Turkey, The Netherlands, Denmark, South Africa, Singapore, Belgium, Philippines, Qatar, Egypt, and across the United States.

Clients Include

Intel, Apple, LEGO, Toshiba, Microsoft, Disney, Universal Studios, Logo Computer Systems, Inc., Tom Snyder Productions, Claris, ICT Qatar, Fundacion Omar Dengo (Costa Rica), Generation YES, Victoria Department of Education, New South Wales Department of Education, Queensland Department of Education, Australian Capital Territory Department of Education, Education Design International, Compaq, One Laptop Per Child, Telefonica (Peru), Fielding-Nair International, and countless schools and school districts around the world.

Select Publications (click on book title for purchasing info)

(chapter contributor) Stager, G. (2020 in press). Constructing Modern Knowledge: Crafting the Next Generation of Constructionists. In N. Holbert, M. Berland, & Y. Kafai (Eds.), Designing Constructionist Futures: The Art, Theory, and Practice of Learning Designs. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press.

(chapter contributor) Minsky, M. (2019). Inventive Minds: Marvin Minsky on Education: Cambridge,MA: MIT Press.

Stager, G. (2019). Unsolicited advice on learning, teaching and leadership. Melbourne, Australia: Centre for Strategic Education

(co-author) Martinez, S. L., & Stager, G. (2019). Invent to learn: Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom, second edition (2 ed.): Torrance, CA: Constructing Modern Knowledge Press.

(contributor) Stager, G. (2018). Transforming Education – Empowering the students of today to create the world of tomorrow. In S. Tierney (Ed.). Redmond, WA: Microsoft.

(chapter contributor) Stager, G., & Martinez, S. (2017). Thirteen Considerations for Teaching Coding to Children. In S. Humble (Ed.), Creating the coding generation in primary schools: A practical guide for cross-curricular teaching. Philadelphia: Routledge.

(foreword) Loader, D. (2016). The Inner Principal: Reflections on Educational Leadership.: Torrance, CA: Constructing Modern Knowledge Press.

(foreword) Schank, R. (2016). Education Outrage. Torrance, CA: Constructing Modern Knowledge Press.

(foreword) Thornburg, D., Thornburg, N., & Armstrong, S. (2014). The Invent to Learn Guide to 3D Printing in the Classroom: Recipes for success: Torrance, CA: Constructing Modern Knowledge Press.

(coauthor) Martinez, S. L., & Stager, G. (2013). Invent to learn: Making, Tinkering, and Engineering in the Classroom, second edition: Torrance, CA: Constructing Modern Knowledge Press.

(chapter contributor) Kohl, H. R. (2012). The Muses Go to School: Inspiring Stories about the Importance of Arts in Education: The New Press.

(chapter contributor) Stager, G. (2003). The Case for Computing. In S. Armstrong (Ed.), Snapshots!: Educational Insights from the Thornburg Center: Thornburg Center.

(chapter contributor) Computers for Kids, Not Schools from the book, Reflections of a Learning Community – Views on the Introduction of Laptops at MLC. 1993

Complete Source of Publications

Personal blog and archive of papers and articles may be found here.

Video Selections

A curated collection of recent media by Dr. Stager