Karl Klimek is a man involved in many facets of the educational community. He holds a Masters degree in Educational Leadership from Eastern Michigan University and an undergraduate degree in Education from Central Michigan University. Karl has roots in the classroom and has also served as an elementary school principal and an assistant superintendent.
One of Karl’s focal points has been that “Educators and students are far more capable to utilize their creative capacities than many current environments are allowing” (karlklimek.com). When asked how educational environments needed to shift in order to allow this creativity to flourish, Karl responded that people will exceed our expectations when “the environment, more than anything, is a place where the humans feel trusted, they feel believed in, they feel empowered and a relevant challenge is put forward.” Many of the initiatives that he is involved with seek to empower teachers through professional development and provide them with the tools to empower and challenge their students.
Square One Education Network
Square One Education Network is a non-profit organization, where Karl serves as Executive Director. One of Karl’s priorities since its foundation in 1995, the organization serves to support STEM education initiatives. The organization supports teachers through a variety of methods, including through professional development opportunities. Cutting edge professional development is available on topics such as 3D printers and integrating STEM through the construction of remotely operated vehicles.
Students who create these vehicles can compete in Innovative Vehicle Design challenges hosted by Square One.
Square One also provides grants to support creative STEM initiatives.
the Arts in Engineering
the Arts in Engineering seeks to help engage students and make learning fun through engineering. According to Karl, this is so important, because, “All learning occurs through the emotional state of the learner.” the Arts in Engineering is designed to be applicable elementary and middle school classrooms, while fitting within the Next Generation Science Standards and the Common Core Standards.
All learning occurs through the emotional state of the learner.” – Karl Klimek
The program is about implementing cost effective, accessible engineering curriculum. It’s all about being creative with the resources available, rather than purchasing expensive engineering equipment or other materials. the Arts in Engineering accomplishes this through teacher training, where teachers create customized engineering curricular units based on their unique school.
Education’s Business Online Radio
In the midst of cutting edge, innovative work, Karl takes his time to do something quite traditional: host a radio show on the Michigan Business Network called Education’s Business. During this program, he focuses on successful collaborations between education and industry. He also discusses STEM initiatives and successful Career and Technology programs. He sees this as a way to highlight positive success stories happening in our schools that frequently go untold.
Karl has also authored two books. He is the lead author on “Generative Leadership: Shaping New Futures for Today’s Schools” along with Elsie Ritzenhein and Kathryn Sullivan. This book approaches leadership in a unique way, by tapping into the collective intelligence of an organization.
He is also the co-author of “12 Brain/Mind Learning Principles in Action: Developing Executive Functions of the Human Brain,” along with Renate Nummela Caine, Geoffrey Caine, Carol McClintic. This book focuses on practical techniques for brain-based education, in order to help teacher and students reach higher performance levels,
For more information about Karl, check out his website: