Tanya Warford: Innovative Learning Supported by Technology

Year: 2021 — Province: Newfoundland
Certificate of Achievement Recipient

Valmont Academy
Grades 6 to 12 - math and science
King's Point, Newfoundland and Labrador


“Learning is a spark that ignites a habit to persevere so that the acquisition of essential skills become habit. Ms. Warford exemplifies this definition. She makes an impact every day. For many students and colleagues, she is that spark that propels them to places they would not otherwise go.”


Teaching Approach

A trailblazer in education, Tanya’s approaches are based on constantly reviewing her methods, supported by the most current technology that she adapts to the specific learning requirements of her pupils. For her, learning to use the technology is not an end. Rather, it is a tool that stimulates engagement and sets students on the path to the acquisition of knowledge and life skills.

In the Classroom

Tanya possesses an extraordinary ability to put technology at the service of student development – notably during the turbulent and complex times that we are living through. The pandemic has changed the way education is provided. Tanya has navigated this uncharted territory with enthusiasm. She has ensured rapid and seamless transition to video conferencing. Having used Google Classroom for a number of years, she integrated Sreencastify – a software that allows the recording of short video clips where students can see and hear the teacher demonstrate concepts – thus providing students with the opportunity to learn at their own pace.

Tanya’s classroom is characterized by attention to each student as an individual with their own strengths and challenges. Smaller rural schools like the Valmont Academy often involve multi-age classes. In this context traditional instructional strategies are not always optimal. Her classroom environment is adapted with learning-block structures where students learn independently through personalized hands-on activities.

Outstanding achievements

In the past year, Tanya has created content on assessment and learning design as a means of addressing the restrictions posed by the pandemic to every teacher in the province. This initiative has had a large positive impact on professional learning in the entire province. She has led a number of sessions on the evolution of her assessment methods. The outcome has shifted to foster hope and a growth mindset for students. Her action has had a positive impact on teachers in over 250 schools in the province. She is helping the system reimagine learning and what it can be.

Tanya is a firm believer that in the real world, individuals are never left alone to perform a specific task. It is a rarity that employees in the workforce find themselves cut off from all outside tools, not permitted to collaborate with others, and being asked to use only whatever is inside their head to solve a problem. Based on this premise, she developed a style of assessment that permits more collaboration among students. She now allows students to collaborate in groups to discuss and share their ideas in order to produce and demonstrate learning. Students are also permitted to use all of the resources at their disposal to back up their understanding of outcomes. 

Get in touch!

Valmont Academy
46 Main Street         
King's Point, NL  A0K 1H0
Email: valmontacad@nlesd.ca
Twitter: @VAV_Vikings