The 11th Canadian International EdTech Leadership Summit 2020 “The Future of Learning in Crisis & Beyond” is pleased to announce Dr. Anju Bajaj as the recipient of its K12Ed Tech Educator of the Year Award. In addition to her classroom teaching duties as a K-8 teacher at Holy Cross School, she is the STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) educator for the Catholic Schools Commission of Winnipeg Manitoba.
She is passionate about providing professional learning opportunities for education and other stakeholders. To this aim, she has become a Let’s Talk Science Teacher Leader. This month she led the Canada wide webinar “Social Distancing: Prototype, Design and Build”. I was fortunate to be one of the participants and was very impressed with her blending of science and technology. She has led her students in Let’s Talk Science challenges, Living Space and Tomatoshere projects. As part of the response to the COVID 19 impact on schools, she became part of the Let’s Talk Science Horizon project. The project assists students with technology issues due to home learning.
Dr. Bajaj provides other professional learning opportunities. She has taken her practical experience of positive inclusive classroom and presented them to other educators. She has been involved with many panel discussion facilitations and been a leader at various conferences such as: Education in Diversity: Diverse Teachers for Diverse Learner-Unleashing the Power and Potential of Newcomer Youth in Manitoba Conference May26th & 27th, 2011 at the University of Winnipeg, MB, and Diversity Teaching and Learning in a Changing World” at Brandon University 2011 Topic: Cultural and Linguistic Diversity. She made a presentation at the Canadian Network of Environmental Communication national conference in 2016 on the topic of “Household Food Insecurity and Obesity in Canadian Adolescents”. Dr. Bajaj has also authored or co-authored over 25 papers on science topics in national and international Journals.
She has collaborated with many other educators to provide STEM opportunities. As part of her drive to inspire an innovative learning environment for ALL students she uses and promotes engaging hands-on learning and interaction with visiting “experts” within and beyond the classroom. At her school she leads the Kids’ New Horizon Club, where students connect science curriculum and STEM education to the beyond the school world. She has also established a number of clubs in her school. These include the Youth Encouraging Sustainability Club, the Science Club, and Robotics Club. Various students from these clubs interact with researchers at the St. Boniface Hospital Research and Cancer Care Manitoba. They receive special invitations to sit in on lecturers by visiting Nobel Prize winners.
Bajaj founded and coordinates the nationally accredited Grades 4-12 Bison Regional Science Fair. Her students have done very well at the national level including this year’s Virtual National Science Fair.
Her efforts have been recognised with various awards. Awards received include: Science Teacher of the Year –STAM (Science Teachers Association of Manitoba), Global Educator Award –MCIC (Manitoba Council for International Cooperation, Outstanding Science Educator –Bioscience Association of Manitoba, Teacher Appreciation Award –MSSS (Manitoba Schools Science Symposium), and Manitoba Education and Training’s Excellence in Education Award.
In this time of learning in crisis and beyond, Dr. Bajaj inspires and empowers her students and other educator for a successful future.