Ryan Schaaf is the Assistant Professor of Educational Technology at Notre Dame of Maryland University and a Faculty Associate for the Johns Hopkins University School of Education Graduate Program with over 15 years of experience in the education field. Before higher education, Ryan was a 3rd grade public school teacher, instructional leader, curriculum designer and a technology integration specialist in Howard County, Maryland. In 2007, he was nominated for Howard County and Maryland Teacher of the Year. In the past, Ryan has published his own research in the New Horizons for Learning and the Canadian Journal of Action Research related to the use of digital games as an effective instructional strategy in the classroom. He also supervised and constructed peer-reviewed, Common Core aligned K-12 lesson units for the 21st Fluency Project.
Currently, Ryan is one of the featured contributors for the world renowned Committed Sardines blog. He has just finished work on his first book entitled, Using Digital Games in the Classroom: Making Learning a Game Worth Playing. He enjoys presenting sessions and keynotes about the potential for gaming in the classroom, the characteristics of 21st century learners, and emerging technologies and trends in education. Ryan is happily married to his beautiful wife, Rachel and has two little boys that are his pride and joy. In his free time he enjoys fishing, exercising, gardening, and volunteering in local schools.