Noyce Scholar Profile
Undergraduate major or graduate field of study: Physics
Subject area(s) and grade level teaching focus: Physics (9-12)
Category of scholarship/fellowship:
Noyce Teaching Fellow
Name of Noyce institution:
Kennesaw State University I-Impact
Current academic or teaching status:
MAT Physics July 2013
School and school district:
Parkview High School, Gwinnett County, GA
I grew up in a small town in Colorado. In 2002 I got my B.S. in Civil Engineering from Colorado State University. I also practiced Civil Engineering for about six years before I decided to leave the Engineering field to teach.
Why do you want to teach:
I first became aware of my passion for teaching when I was volunteering with Society of Women Engineers. In my role with them I was able to share my love for science and engineering with them through experiments and design problems. Now after deciding to make the career change I’m still motivated to share my love for science and engineering with young people because science is what allows us to understand, and improve our world. I want to give my students this perspective on science!
Describe a memorable teaching experience:
One of my most memorable teaching experiences so far was on the day before spring break this semester. I wanted to plan an engaging lesson for my students but I also knew they would most likely not remember the details of the lesson for 10 days until the Monday after spring break, and that my students would be a little wild because it was 7th period the Friday before spring break. I had planned a lesson in which the students used computer simulations to model circuits but I wasn’t quite satisfied with it. That day I went and observed a neighboring teacher who was making some loud noise in his lessons. His lesson was an imaginary scenario in which his students were on a mars lander and they collided with something in space! They were then tasked with finding a battery, a wire, and a lightbulb and using them to “fix the lighting system on board.” After observing his lesson, I thought I was just what I was looking for to keep my students engaged, and it introduced them to the appropriate material without being too in depth. I asked this teacher if I could use his lesson in my classroom and he approved. Teaching this lesson was out of my confort zone because it required me to act like I was the captain of the mars landar, and be very dramatic, but it turned out to be exactly what my students needed to keep them engaged and learning on the day before spring break! They even asked about the lunar landar when they got back from spring break.
What does the Noyce program mean to you:
For me, Noyce has meant meeting some very impressive people who also happen to be future teachers like me. We all struggle and achieve together, and we learn from eachother. I am 100% convinced that the individuals I have met in the Noyce Program at Kennesaw are going to be some of the very best teachers out there. They have big ideas, and they impliment them in their classrooms everyday! I know that as a part of this community I will continue to grow as a teacher year after year. Of course it also means much needed financial assistance!