About the Team
Meg Ormiston is on a mission to change the world of education. She shares her passion for teaching and learning with technology through her keynote speaking, through her writing, and on social media. Meg was a classroom teacher for twelve years and now travels nationally and internationally, speaking about the power of teaching and learning with digital tools. When Meg is home in the Chicago suburbs, you will often find her in classrooms serving as an instructional coach.
In her role as a consultant, Meg partners with school systems that are committed to 21st-century learning experiences for everyone. Meg creates a unique partnership in each district, reflecting the mission, vision, and direction that local leaders have identified. Her districtwide projects have included guiding teams through the visioning process, designing and delivering professional development, facilitating classroom modeling, developing student leaders in technology, and educating parents.
As a thought leader in education technology, Meg has published seven books and is collaborating with a team for the five books in the NOW Classrooms series. Meg holds a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from National-Louis University.
Beth Hatlen is a kindergarten teacher in a full-day kindergarten program in a 1:1 school district in west suburban Chicago. Since 2000, Beth has taught preschool and first grade, and she is a certified reading specialist. She has a passion for making learning hands-on, meaningful, and fun while integrating technology into everyday instruction.
Beth was the Downers Grove Elementary Education Association Teacher of the Year in 2012. She has given presentations on differentiated learning at state and national conferences and on how to integrate technology into the classroom at many district-level in-service days. Beth is a Seesaw ambassador and is active in district and regional collaborations for STEM, language arts, and full-day kindergarten development.
Beth has a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education at Elmhurst College and went on to complete her master’s degrees in curriculum and instruction through National Louis University. Beth is a wife to Brian and a mother to a son, a daughter, and a golden retriever.
Kristy Hopkins is a kindergarten teacher in a 1:1 district in suburban Chicago. She began teaching preschool in an early childhood education program in 2006. Kristy considers herself creative and collaborative and loves to take on new challenges to continue her own learning. She has a passion for helping every student learn in fun, innovative, and developmentally appropriate ways that make every day meaningful.
Kristy is a Seesaw ambassador who holds a special education certificate of approval and an endorsement for teaching English learners. She was nominated for the 2015 Education Foundation of Downers Grove District 58 Distinguished Service Award and has mentored many new teachers. She has presented at district and school in-service days on how to use technology in the classroom and in social-emotional learning.
Kristy has a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education from Illinois State University and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from National Louis University. Kristy is a wife and a mother to two young girls and loves to spend her free time with her family, go on outdoor adventures, and read anything and everything.
Kirstin McGinnis is a veteran kindergarten teacher in a 1:1 iPad classroom that hosts teachers nationwide for site visits. She feels passionate about providing all students with access to a well-rounded, developmentally appropriate education tailored to each student’s needs.
Kirstin is an EdTech consultant and has presented at local, state, and national conferences. She consults for the Technology in Early Childhood Center at Erikson Institute in Chicago and is a primary and EdTech blogger at Hip Hooray in K.
Kirstin has a graduate degree in differentiated instruction and is working on a second master’s degree in leadership. Kirstin loves to spend downtime with her husband, baby (on the way), and two pit mixes, in addition to spending time rescuing and fostering dogs, baking, and completing enthusiast DIY projects.
Lissa Blake is an instructional technology integration coach who, for thirteen years, has transformed that role from a computer lab teacher to a true instructional coach supporting K–2 teachers and students. Lissa loves sharing what she has learned by creating exciting presentations that actively engage participants at local conferences and often engage and enlighten all learners.
Lissa is a Seesaw ambassador, Nearpod pioneer, and Google-certified educator and is working to complete her certificate as a Certified Education Technology Leader. She has had the privilege of speaking at local, state, and national conferences.
Lissa received her bachelor’s degree in education at Indiana University and earned her master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from National Louis University. She is pursuing a second master’s degree in technology in education. Lissa loves spending all her free time exploring life with her two young girls, husband, and dog.
Nicole Ring serves as an instructional coach in a suburban 1:1 school district. She spent four years teaching fourth grade and seven years teaching first grade. As an instructional coach, Nicole works as a colleague alongside classroom teachers to support student learning and growth. She works with teachers to develop and implement instructional strategies in all content areas while integrating technology in meaningful ways.
Nicole is a Seesaw ambassador and sits on several committees in her district. She has presented at local, state, and national conferences.
Nicole completed her bachelor’s degree in elementary education and master’s degree in curriculum and instruction at North Central College. Nicole maintains a growth mindset, wanting to learn more and more each day, and she loves to spend her free time with her husband and two boys.