Fourth-grade student taking the TEDx stage

Fourth-grade student taking the TEDx stage
Posted on 04/28/2022
Ben George

Ben George is a fourth-grade student in Mrs. Stoker and Mr. Albrecht’s classroom at Hill School. He is 9 years old, but he is already accomplishing amazing things.

At the end of April, Ben will be speaking about educational freedom on stage at the TEDx talk in Clinton, New York. Ben, who is one of the youngest TED talk speakers to ever take the stage, says he is both nervous and excited for the upcoming event. His talk will address how educational freedom- the ability to help shape his own, personal curriculum- has impacted him as a student and the beneficial impact it can have on other students. Ben has been able to take advantage of the opportunity of educational freedom this year, choosing different topics to focus on with reading assignments each night.


“Students should get to learn what they choose to be able to have more fun in school,” says Ben. “One person would learn what they want to learn and the other would learn what they wanted to learn.”


Ben was approached by Mr. Albrecht about the opportunity to present at the TEDx event, after expressing an interest in taking ownership of his learning this year. “If I told myself a year ago that I’d be giving a speech to 150 people, I probably wouldn’t have believed myself,” says Ben.


Before the COVID-19 pandemic closed schools in 2020, two Brockport students were scheduled to provide talks at a previously scheduled TEDx event. However, due to the pandemic, the event was canceled. One of the students who was scheduled to speak in 2020 has since graduated from Brockport Central, but that isn’t stopping her from attending the event in April. Sharon Marie Bartz, now a student at Potsdam College, has revised her 2020 speech and will be delivering it at the upcoming TEDx event.


The event will take place at 6 p.m. at Clinton Middle School in Clinton, New York, and the speeches will be featured worldwide after they are edited in New York City. Congratulations to both Ben and Sharon Marie!


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