About Me

After a career as a flute player, I trained as a teacher and taught Music in two comprehensive schools in Norfolk and London and then joined the Berlin Brandenburg International School in 2001 becoming curriculum coordinator for the IBO Middle Years Programme and then Middle School Principal. I then took on a position as Middle School Principal at St. John’s International School in Belgium between 2010-2013.

I am currently co-founder of Glacier Lake School in Montana, USA. It’s a school which focuses on Self-directed learning and democracy. I also co-founded Experience Academy Montana which runs summer camps.

I have been a key organiser  of TedxKids Brussels for 2011 and 2012 and was a speaker at TedxBrussels in November 2012, the largest Tedx event in the world.

I believe that the school system prevalent in our world needs re-thinking quickly. We need to get away from the de-personalised and  de-motivational system most children face and focus on curiosity, deep exploration and action within a framework which focuses on giving students the responsibility for learning based on their passions and interests.


9 thoughts on “About Me

  1. Leo Seeling 7B

    I think the idea of having a blog is really cool, I like you website. I hope that some other students will also visit it!

  2. Jakob Meinel 7b

    Dear Mr. Kestner,
    I find this Blog a great idea. I hink many more students should visit it. And another good idea would be that you play something nice on the flute next assembly. 😉

  3. tariq

    am all the way in tanzania, and im still reading this ^^ but mr kestner u shud add more stuff to this blog.

  4. Vincent 8a

    Funny I was researching on google and found this blog, its kind of famous I mean I dident even search for it and I still found it, I like the Idea, but dont really like the 1. punishment part hehe =) but I agree if something bad happens it must be punnished.

  5. Alexander Blake-Pink

    As a former student whose life was once graced by Mr. Kestner, my advice to anyone reading this is that he knows what he is talking about, it was pleasure to be taught by him and is one of the few teachers I can say happily influenced my life and my goals. Very methodology and had a great affinity with most of us at our school. When he came to teach us he was replacing someone I really liked, I didn’t want to give him a chance. But he opened my eyes and ears and I started to aspire to want to be something/someone.
    I now have a Degree and am about to go into the big world with some confidence, something I lacked before the “Kestner years”.
    Listen to the man, he knows what he’s talking about.
    p.s plays a mean flute

  6. Ben Danner

    Dear Mr. Kestner,

    I find your thoughts and ideas rather remarkable. Would you agree that most of research is also based on your own experiences. Anyways, caught this blog when trying to locate you and hope that we can somehow sit down again to discuss the past, present, and future of educaiton. I’m glad to see you’re making a difference in the world of education, and as a former colleague I too agree that you are a fabulous teacher.

    • Anne Büchner

      Hello Mr Danner!
      How are you doing?? Haven’t heard any news from you ever you left BBIS! Remember me helping out in your class for my CAS-hours?
      Best wishes to you!

  7. Giovanna Vivian

    Buongiorno Mr Ben Kestner,
    me too I’ve become a teacher, a language and Italian cooking teacher, and I live in Spain! Do you remember me?
    Well, let’s get in touch!

  8. Mabel Paredes-Nichtova

    I was always very impressed on your interest and knowledge of technology in education. I can’t agree more with you in that the school system around the world needs to focus more on the students’ needs by leading them to explore the world and express their own opinions while taking responsibility and action, but in order to do this, teachers and parents should work together as they play a very important role in their children’s lives. Sad to see you leave, but want to wish you best of luck in your new adventure! Mabel

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