The Team

Pana: The Idea Person & Creator


RRR_4844 (1)

Using a teddy bear in the classroom is something that Early Childhood teachers have done for generations. I have often included a class bear to give children a purpose to apply learning by teaching the teddy bear or being a good example for the bear.

Over the past few years, my eyes have been opened to how technology connects the classroom to the world and expands learning to a global scale. Regardless of how much technology has broadened the scope of what we do, real hands-on experiences still remain a very important part of Early Childhood Education. So, I thought to myself, what if I could combine both? Thus, the birth of the Traveling Teddy Bear project! Kids will get the real experience of having Teddy in the classroom with them, and use technology to interact with children in other parts of the world through the shared experience the Traveling Teddy project. I am very excited to watch our bears journeys this year and hope you will follow along on the blog or at #GlobalEdTed on Twitter.

More about Pana:

Pana has taught in Early Childhood for seven years and is now the KA-2 Technology and Design Coach at Taipei American School in Taipei, Taiwan. She is also an Apple Distinguished Educator (Class of 2015).

Professional Blog

Twitter: @PanaAsavavatana

Joe: Co-Creator & Consultant-at-large


When Pana and I started talking about Traveling Teddy, my mind began filling with all sorts of ideas as to how Teddy might travel and how Technology could be used. Teddy bears and other toys are used often in the Early Childhood classroom to enhance learning.  Something I believe strongly in, is that if you are going to use Technology in some way, then it also needs to enhance learning. So, I love that Teddy is Tech Savvy and that, that he has a blog, and some other tricks. And now, Ted is not alone! He as many other friends and family who have joined in the fun! I hope your class really enjoys having the Teds and communicating with other classes around the world. Feel free to get back to us with any feedback or suggestions you may have.

 More about Joe:

Joe currently teaches at the Canadian International School in Singapore and is an Apple Distinguished Educator (Class of 2015)

Twitter: @pep073

Mr Joe’s previous Class Blog

Our Coordinators:

Braedon Sharp

Braedon SharpHello my name is Braedon Sharp and I am a Canadian living in Hong Kong working at the Canadian International School. This is going to be my fourth with the Traveling Teddy Bear project. It has been a joy and privilege to be a part of this and I love seeing the excitement in the student’s eyes when they get to interact with the bears. It is also amazing to witness a Skype date when the students get to see the bears around the world. I cannot wait to get things going and see what adventures the bears get up to this year.

Twitter: @BraedonSharp




Ann Lopez


Mabuhay! I am originally from the “pearl of the Orient Seas,” the Philippines. I am an early childhood educator working at Shekou International School, China.  Technology is one of my passions.  I have been exploring ways how to use technology as a tool for instruction and students’ learning to teach diversity.  I am glad, I am on Twitter, and found the Traveling Teddy Bears! 🙂 Having one of the Bears in the classroom added joy to my students’ learning, and as well as fostered global citizenship, and collaboration skills.  I am thrilled, and looking forward to what’s going to happen when a teddy comes to town.

Twitter: @annlopez1981

Skype: mary.ann.lopez.toyoh      

 Lindsay Vargas

lvarg1Hi! My name is Lindsay Vargas and I am a Costa Rican teacher currently working at Shekou International School (#SISrocks) in China.  This is my fourth year with the Traveling Teddy Bears project, having hosted Bessie each year.  We love seeing her traveling around the world, following her trajectory on the maps and the time lines, making stories around her, graphs about the countries where she has been and creating houses and other items for her arrival to our school using recycling materials.  This project has helped us enhance our learning experience while connecting with the world around us making the learning more real and meaningful for us. Looking forward to new a trip full of adventures!!!

Twitter: @LindsayVargasB

Skype: linvarbe

Janice Dwyer

Janice Ted pic

Greetings! I am a Learning Innovation Coach at Chinese International School in Hong Kong. I am excited to be participating in the Traveling Teddy Project again this year. Here at CIS, my team loved seeing our students’ enthusiasm grow upon the arrival of our teddy. (One student was so excited she was trembling with joy!) Having a visiting teddy was both inspiring and fun for all. We look forward to connecting with others and broadening our horizons while learning alongside our furry friends.

Twitter: @jandwy



Laura Richardson



Hi!  My name is Laura Richardson, and I am a first grade teacher in Brookline, Massachusetts USA.  Like so many other primary teachers, I have loved having a traveling teddy as part of my curriculum. Following the bear’s adventures online has definitely helped my first graders develop a more global perspective.  I am excited to serve as a coordinator this year, and, hopefully, have my students make even more connections with classrooms around the world!

Twitter: @1rfirstgrade

Skype: firstgrade1r


Lyaca Riddle



Hi my name is Lyaca Riddle.  I am a Kindergarten Teacher in Markham, Ontario, Canada.  After witnessing first hand the excitement and learning that Traveling Teddy ignited in my classroom I wanted to get more involved.  We are looking forward to learning about the places our Teddy explores as she travels the world.

Twitter: @ReesorPS

Skype: Ridlya



Tom Hammerlund

Hi. My name is Tom Hammerlund. I just moved back to Japan after spending two years in Taiwan. I have been involved in the Traveling Teddy Bear Project for a few years now as a teacher, school facilitator, and now a Bear Coordinator. I have seen how excited students are to open the package, take care of the bear, and connect with other students from around the world. I have been impressed with the creative ways teachers use the bear and am looking forward to seeing how you use it in your classroom.
Skype: thammerlund



Gina Whitcomb

Hi! My name is Gina Whitcomb. I am a Teacher on Special Assignment, focusing on technology integration in Anaheim, California. I have been in elementary education for almost 20 years. I have spent time as an elementary teacher in addition to being in support roles such as instructional coach, digital learning coach, and now as a Technology TOSA. I have loved having a #GlobalEdTed in our classrooms for the last few years. I love how it helps students connect, learn about other cultures around the world, and integrate technology to communicate globally. This year we are excited to have the support of Paralympic Wheelchair Basketball gold medal winner and ESPY winner, Steve Serio, to help students learn about diversity, inclusion, hard work and perseverance.

Twitter: @techTOSAgina

Skype: mrs.whitcomb

Jason Graham

Hello my name is Jason Graham and I am a Digital Literacy Coach at Jakarta Intercultural School in Indonesia. I am so excited to once again be involved in such a worthwhile global project. Having Bessie the Teddy Bear visit our community was so much fun and really promoted compassion and resourcefulness! Bessie went to many events at JIS during her short visit including Battle of the Books and Indonesia Week where she had many opportunities to immerse herself in our host culture. Of course our learners took her around the school to make sure she felt part of the JIS Dragon family. We enjoyed following her adventures and connecting to other classrooms around the world to see what Bessie was up to. I look forward to seeing what adventures await all of the bears through their blogs.

Twitter: @jasongraham99

Skype: jasongraham.84

Easyblog Jr

Profile-Photo is delighted to support the Traveling Teddies into their third year by providing copies of our Easyblog Jr app for host classes. Developed by 3 teachers at the Western Academy of Beijing, our apps have become much loved by both teachers and students, and paired with our new blogging platform,, we hope to give even our youngest learners every chance to connect in a safe environment.




Contact Us:

Pin on PinterestShare on FacebookShare on Google+Tweet about this on TwitterDigg thisShare on LinkedInShare on RedditShare on TumblrEmail this to someone

Comments are closed