Shelly Terrell

Secrets of Edupreneurs interview series starring Shelly Terrell


Welcome to Issue four in our interview series starring none other than Shelly Shanchez Terrell.

This dynamic lady hardly needs an introduction, but for those of you new to online professional development or educational technology, Shelly Terrell is an undisputed leader in the field.


Shelly pictured at the Bammy Awards – ELT Oscars 🙂

Shelly Terrell is the cure to procastination:

While many of us may wish we could bottle her energy and zap, there is actually a better way. The better way is to learn from Shelly through her networks, webinars and special initiatives. Shelly’s Edugoal movement encourages teachers to set achievable goals while the community provides a supportive network on Facebook, Twitter and through member blogs. By accepting challenges and setting goals you find yourself becoming energised, excited and unstoppable. I’ve been involved with the Edugoal movement since last year and the fun is contagious. I found myself doing lots of things I wouldn’t have done if left to my own devices. This is just one of the ways in which Shelly shares her success mindset. Other ways are through her free webinars, Twitter leadership and the fact that she travels all over the world holding profession development workshops. See her digital portfolio here.

The name of her blog and website ‘Teacher Reboot Camp’ says it all.

Not only is Shelly respected and admired around the world for her many accomplishments, but she gives back all of this success to her global community of educators. Shelly radiates a rainbow of possibilities in a world where we need to find them. She wants all of us to make a difference in the larger scheme of things. She is one of those people who manages to pay it forward and give back to the community at the same time.

One way she has of paying it forward is by organising massive online events through initiatives such as #RSCON the Reform Symposium and The Electronic Village Online that provide free professional development for teachers all over the world.

She gives back to the community by sharing her time, knowledge and materials.


As Shelly says:

This news felt pretty good, helping over 300,000 teachers this year! Got a lot of work to do to break that record in 2014. #2014NotALotOfSleepingAhead

The most important thing that I’ve learnt from Shelly is the power of blogging just for fun, reflection and personal reasons. I started writing more personal articles as a way of accomplishing some of the goals. I later discovered that this is actually called ‘unnecessary creation‘. We must not be doggedly productive 24 hours a day. Being creative just for fun actually sharpens your focus and drive in the long-run.

Shelly herself lives by the motto ‘work hard and play hard‘.

Let’s learn more about her now or I’ll go on forever:

1) What’s one secret behind your many inspirational teacher-training projects and winning the Bammy Award for co-founding #Edchat?

Collaboration! I’ve learned to ask the passionate educators I connect with online to share their talents. Many are so helpful and the teachers they help can visit their blogs and connect with them in their other areas.

2) Where does your optimism come from?

I regularly get to see the impact of these projects. Teachers send us heartfelt thanks, pictures of their work worldwide, and even Thank You’s from their students.

3) Can you think of any ‘secret’ mistakes you’ve made that have actually propelled your success all the more?

One mistake I often hear I make is that I share too openly. Yes, it means I have gotten cyberstalkers or those who steal my work. It also means my work gets to those who need it the most. This only happens by sharing.

4) Which talent contributes most to your work?

My parents passed onto me the belief to pursue passions no matter what. When I want to accomplish anything I don’t see the obstacles or listen to why I can’t do it, instead I just go for it and see what happens.

5) What are some of your secrets to making timid learners more confident?

It’s important to provide immediate and specific feedback that begins with positive comments. Then we can offer a few suggestions to improve the work. Students won’t learn everything in one assignment so we should focus on the most important things for them to improve.

6) What are your Ninja psychological tricks to persevering when the going gets tough?

When the going gets tough I go to my online support circles and their words of encouragement and examples make me see how these projects make a difference. It gives me the strenght to continue.

7) What were you doing when the idea of bringing educational innovation to teachers worldwide first hit you?

I was living in Germany and wondering how I could connect with other teachers to improve myself. I had just moved to Germany from the US, and missed the support of my staff back home.

8) Which 20% of your work gives you the greatest results?

Probably my weekly free webinars and the sharing of the slides and resources on various social networks like Twitter, Google Plus, Facebook, LinkedIn, Slideshare and other areas.

9) Name some areas of your work where you developed competence through hard work and vision.

Being seen as a leader in education technology is not easy for a female minority. One way I keep current is by testing new things in my field and providing events and projects that are innovative and different. I learn a lot from others in the field and also continuously learn.

10) What else do we need to know about you?

I love my pug, Rosco, and he’s one of my greatest supporters!





Well, that should inspire all of you. Shelly has also done much in collaboration with some of us on WiziQ.

She presented at MOODLE MOOC 3, the massive open online course created by Dr. Nellie Deutsch. I attended her class entitled ‘Oh, the places you’ll go: insights into E-pedagogy from Dr.Seuss, which was full of inspiration, both for those new online and those of us with more experience.

The prolific Dr. Nellie also ran the CO14 initiative on WiziQ where Shelly presented ‘Reimagining Online Learning and Reflective Multi-media eportfolios Online’.

Personally speaking I’ve worked with Shelly through different projects such as Jason R. Levine’s ELT-Techniques MOOC. You can check out her class and projects at the ELT MOOC here. I was one of the moderators for Shelly’s ‘Crafting the e-perfect textbook’ , I presented at the reform symposium webinars, and other similar initiatives.

Stand by for further collaboration in March with the Spring Blog Festival created by Dr. Nellie Deutsch, which we will also help organise together.

Special thanks to Shelly, an educator who has made a big difference to me. Join the Edugoal movement too if you want a piece of the action.

Sylvia Guinan

is an online English teacher, writer and blogger who facilitates professional development online. She uses brain-friendly techniques to help students and teachers around the world. She designs educational materials, develops courses, writes resource papers and publishes ebooks. Her work is the result of much research into the psychology of learning, as well as hands-on experience with multi-media technology.

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