Michael Soskil

Wallenpaupack South Elementary School
United States

“Every problem that our world faces has a solution locked inside the passions of our students.”


Michael believes students need meaningful emotional connections to learn. He engages them in distance learning service projects and uses multimedia technology to link them to others who are passionate about real-world problems. He has helped students connect live with over 70 countries as well as the International Space Station.

In one project, children from the US and Greece connected with children in Nairobi’s Kibera slum and partnered with Vestergaard to raise over $12,000 for water filters to protect 2 schools and 3,000 slum residents against disease. Michael’s students created videos to teach mathematics to the Kenyan children who, in return, taught them Swahili. The collaboration, featured at last year’s International Society for Technology in Education Conference, grew to include student-created videos from dozens of countries.

Michael’s school has exceeded state averages in tests, despite great poverty in the area, every year he has been Head. His students achieved a 100% pass rate in state maths exams (93% advanced).

Michael’s work has been the subject of many articles in international publications. He is a Microsoft Innovative Educator Expert (he co-authored the Mystery Skype notebook) and NGO advisor. A speaker at the UN Social Innovation and Mashable/UN Foundation Social Good summits, he received the Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching and made the 2015 Global Teacher Prize Top 50. He is very active in teacher training and recruitment both in the USA and abroad.

  • Helps students learn through meaningful connections created using multimedia technology; his students connected with over 70 countries (plus the International Space Station) in one year
  • Despite being in an underprivileged area, his school exceeds state averages in tests every year
  • Received Presidential Award for Excellence in Math and Science Teaching; ranked in 2015’s Global Teacher Prize Top 50