When it comes to working with educators, Alex Kajitani is the real deal. With over twenty years of experience on the front lines of education, he knows what it takes to truly succeed as a teacher today.

Alex customizes every talk based on your needs, and is widely recognized as someone who is as engaging virtually as he is in-person! He speaks primarily on three topics within education: Teacher & Student Motivation, Teacher Leadership, and Effective Math Instruction. Scroll down for details on all of his talks.

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Teacher & Student Motivation

Alex is dedicated to helping create highly effective teachers who love what they do, and is also a leading authority in training teachers to teach online. Throughout his presentations, he weaves inspirational stories with real, practical strategies that can be implemented the very next day.

Alex’s virtual and in-person sessions on this topic include:

Owning It: How To Be Highly Effective & Love What You Do

Twenty years ago, Alex Kajitani was a struggling new teacher in one of California’s poorest neighborhoods. His students seemed unmotivated, unengaged and uninterested in what he was teaching. Demoralized and desperate, he set out on a journey to turn his class, and his life, around.

Today, Alex holds the title of California Teacher of the Year and a Top-4 Finalist for National Teacher of the Year, 2009, and is lauded for his innovation and “real talk” as an educator. His journey — from frustrated new teacher to being honored at The White House — is one he now shares with educators across the country, to inspire them to new heights and fresh ways of thinking about the students they serve and the subjects they teach. Alex tells refreshingly honest stories of what it truly takes to succeed as a teacher today, and interweaves them with real, easy-to-implement teaching strategies, which can be used the very next day, to create the world as it can be.

Building Powerful Relationships with Students During Remote Learning

Online or in-person, learning never stops, and neither does the need to create powerful, trusting relationships with our students. This fast-paced, training gives educators of all subjects and levels high-leverage, authentic strategies that can be immediately implemented to build relationships with students and create a classroom community where everyone feels safe, loved and confident. Specifically, how to:

  • Create an online classroom culture where students arrive engaged, and stay engaged until they sign off (and even after that!).
  • Implement procedures and routines in your online classroom so that students depend on and deeply value their teacher, themselves and each other.
  • Incorporate specific examples that other teachers are using to build powerful relationships with their students so that everyone thrives!

Creating a Culture of Compassion

From the classroom to the boardroom, creating a culture of compassion is essential to the success of every student, teacher and administrator. Join California Teacher of the Year, Alex Kajitani, for a bold and honest look at why some schools and organizations flounder, while others thrive. Attendees will leave with real, practical strategies that address:

· How leaders can drive the culture of their organizations.
· How social-emotional learning and proactive prevention are the keys to stopping bullying at all levels.
· Why educating the “whole child” means educating the whole school, district and community.

Throughout this session, Alex will present the latest cutting-edge research, and weave in effective teaching and leadership techniques with stories of triumphs and failures, so that can you return to your school or district with strategies that work.

The TurnAround Teacher: Real Classroom Management for Real Students

After eight years of successful teaching, one of the country’s top teachers found himself with a class that left him frustrated, helpless, and wanting to quit.

Instead of quitting, Alex dedicated himself to mastering four principles of classroom management that revolutionized every aspect of how he ran his class. In this presentation, Alex weaves stories of raw honesty and hope with classroom management strategies and solutions. This talk will inspire new teachers, reinvigorate veteran educators and motivate mid-career educators to teach with passion, courage, and a determination to succeed.

Rap & The Gap: Why Understanding Our Students Is The Key To Helping Them Achieve

Let’s be honest: We can’t teach our students if we don’t understand who they are, and how they’re motivated. The key is to stop trying to force our curriculum into our students’ lives and, instead, fit our students’ lives into the curriculum. Alex connects his own desperate attempts to connect with his students to the lessons he learned along his journey to becoming one of America’s top teachers. Be prepared to laugh, to cry, to return to your school ignited with fresh strategies that can be immediately implemented.

How to Teach Procedures So You Stress Less & Teach More

Harsh Reality: Without solid classroom management, teaching core content is often frustrating and ineffective. This breakout session, designed especially for new teachers (and veteran teachers who need a brush up!), focuses on the three critical steps to teaching students how to follow procedures, until they become a routine part of the class. Participants will leave this session with a real, personalized plan for success, and will return to their classrooms ready to implement one of the most essential skills critical to being a highly effective teacher.


Teacher Leadership

Alex is one of the country’s leading authorities on Teacher Leadership, and has published articles on the topic in several leading education publications. His book, The Teacher of the Year Handbook, is being used by the country’s top Teacher Leaders to develop and strengthen the skills necessary to truly lead within our schools, and across our communities.

Alex’s talks on this topic include:

Teach. Lead. Repeat. Getting Real About What It Takes To Be a Teacher Leader Today

Twenty years ago, Alex Kajitani was a struggling new teacher in one of California’s poorest neighborhoods.  His students were unmotivated, unengaged and uninterested in the math he was teaching.  Demoralized and desperate, he set out on a journey to turn his class, and his life, around.

Today, Alex holds the title of California Teacher of the Year, 2009, and is a leading authority on teacher leadership. He now works with teachers, schools and districts to help teacher leaders develop the critical skills necessary to lead their colleagues at their schools, and throughout their communities. His journey, from frustrated new teacher to the White House Rose Garden, is one he now shares with Teacher Leaders across the country, to inspire them to fresh ways of thinking about leadership that and elevates our schools, communities and profession.

The Message, The Messenger & The Messaging: How Teacher Leaders Can Make Their Point, Influence Others & Get Things Done

For teacher leaders to create real change in education, they need a message that is well-crafted, on-point and articulately delivered. In this session, Alex guides teacher leaders through the critical steps necessary to develop a message that sticks, and moves people to action. This session is ideal for organizations that want to create consistent messaging around their organization, and for teacher teams that want to develop a plan that improves their school, community or the world of education.

Today’s Teacher Leader: How to Drive Change That Really Matters

Let’s be honest: Without a solid plan, teacher leadership is ineffective and just a buzzword. This session delivers the skills necessary to build your network, influence people to help you, and make REAL change that benefits your students, school and community. You will leave this session with real-life examples of what teacher leaders are doing at their school sites, and throughout education — and with a plan you can begin implementing NOW.

Effective Math Instruction

Looking for high-quality professional development for math teachers? Alex is passionate about helping to train teachers to be confident, excited and knowledgeable about math. His presentations will turn even a math-phobic teacher into one who is engaging and effective!

Alex’s talks on this topic include:

How to Connect Math & Literacy

The ability to speak, read and write is now an essential part of math class. Teachers will explore, discuss, practice and reflect upon high-leverage strategies that are easy-to-implement, and will get our students on the path toward achieving the State Standards.

Specific topics to be covered include:

  • Inspiring students to talk about math in a way that is meaningful and relevant to their lives.
  • Getting students writing about math, and using math to argue, communicate and justify their thinking.
  • Teaching students to persevere in attempting, evaluating and solving “word problems.”
  • Addressing the negative stereotypes about math that exist in society, and how to combat them.
  • Engaging students with strategies, activities and games that can be used to teach the State Standards.

Strength in Numbers: Social Emotional Learning & Math

Without strong social and emotional skills, students really struggle in math class. From approaching word problems with self-confidence and determination, to persevering through multi-step problems, building strong SEL skills helps students build their self-awareness and make sense of mathematics. In this session, Alex shows how teachers can incorporate SEL into mathematics instruction and gives immediately implementable tools that help students approach problem solving, number sense and mistakes with confidence and a growth mindset. Specific outcomes include:

  • Understand how developing self-awareness leads to decreased math anxiety.
  • Build relationships with students so they are motivated and excited about learning math.
  • Develop a growth mindset that embraces mistakes and perseveres with challenging math concepts.

Top-10 Tips for Teaching Math Online

This fast-paced training gives attendees strategies, tips and resources that can be used immediately to get students (and your own children!) engaged in math while they learn online. Online or in-person, learning never stops, and this session will show you how to help your students thrive in math and in life.

Engaging & Amazing Resources for Teaching Math Online

From virtual manipulatives to engaging websites, this session gives teachers engaging, practical and highly vetted resources that they can use with their students in a virtual classroom (or any type of classroom!). Come explore and play with some great resources that you can use immediately while teaching online.

Helping Newcomer ELL Students Achieve in Math

For a newcomer ELL student, school and learning can be difficult, intimidating and present quite a challenge for the teacher. At the same time, newcomer students bring with them experiences, grit and determination that will help them thrive. This heartfelt and powerful session explores the experiences of newcomer students, and gives you specific, implementable strategies that you can use to build relationships with them while unlocking their ability and potential to achieve in math and life!

Making Math Cool, with The Rappin’ Mathematician!

The workshop that made Alex famous! This session offers teachers the tools, courage and expertise to combat negative stereotypes of mathematicians as “nerdy” and “boring.” Before students can be motivated to achieve in math, they must first see its value in their own lives. Engaging, effective teaching speaks to students where they live. “Making Math Cool!” delivers easy-to-implement, hands-on strategies that turn even the most hardened student into one that says, “Hey, that’s pretty cool ­­­– and so is my teacher!”

Multiplication Nation: Get EVERY Kid to Know Their Times Tables!

Alex knows that all successful students know their times tables, and he is on a mission to get EVERY kid in America to know them by the time they leave elementary school. In this session, he shows you step-by-step how to create a program in your class, or at your school, that is fun and effective, and empowers all students to achieve in math.