As a biology teacher…
it is my responsibility to get students excited about science and to help them realize that a knowledge of biology can and will enhance their lives, no matter what they choose to pursue as a career. I feel it is important to foster critical thinking in my students, challenge but not overwhelm them, assist them in finding information, encourage them to ask questions, and help them become owners of their education. This, in my opinion, is best done by directly involving students through the use of interactive discussions and “hands-on” laboratory work along with the integration of contemporary topics in research. I believe it is important for students to understand that biology is the study of individual organisms, along with their interactions with the environment and other living things. I endeavor to present topics in the classroom systematically, enabling all students to see the connection between the natural environment and their everyday lives. I attempt to convey to my students that science is not a static collection of facts but is very much alive with mysteries, controversies, and new areas of exploration. By urging students to participate in discussions of current research, they begin to understand that biology is about asking questions, often followed by answers and new sets of questions. My ultimate goal is to enable a student who, when presented with a problem, can assimilate information, synthesize an idea, explore potential solutions, and effectively communicate their conclusions. A student who can do this will be well served in any field.
The courses I teach include, Plants and Human Affairs (INBIO100, INBIO300), The Science and Literature of Plants (ITW101), The Other Side of Possible (ITW101), Evolution (BIO111), Plant Evolution (BIO365), Plant Biology (BIO363), and Senior Seminar (BIO495).
You can also search for me on YouTube to see some of my instructional videos.