A Unique Set of Skills
What makes me marketable?
I have experience developing standards based, interdisciplinary, real-world curricular materials for grades K-12. Here are two examples of my work.
Sea Turtle Exploration
This curriculum uses sea turtles to teach STEAM for grades K-5. Students learn how reptiles, sea turtle nesting, how turtles live in the wild, and how they're cared for at the North Carolina Aquarium at Fort Fisher. With over 30 lesson plans, teachers can search for turn-key activities by standard or by topic. The website is full of content to explore and learn about turtles and turtle conservation. The curriculum also includes a blog.
This high school curriculum was developed to introduce students to issues related with climate change. I worked with local high school students to develop a film about climate change in the Cape Fear Region of North Carolina. I facilitated events with experts to allow the students to explore the issues first hand. The film was presented at the Coastal America Student Summit on Oceans and Coasts in 2011 to governmental and nongovernmental agencies. In addition to the film, I developed a supporting, standards-based curriculum.
I create and facilitate professional development for educators both formal and informal as well as for pre-service teachers.
I am certified to teach Population Education workshops as well as Project Wet workshops. These workshops are designed to help teachers integrate national curricula into their classrooms. I am also certified to teach the North American Association of Environmental Education's Guidelines for Excellence. I facilitate these workshops for formal educators, informal educators, and pre-service teachers. Additionally, I am certified to lead Reflecting on Practice workshops to help informal science educators use research and assessment to evaluate and improve their teaching practices. Professional development opportunities are vital for helping maintain a highly qualified education workforce in both formal and informal science education.
In addition to facilitating workshops based on national curricula, I develop professional development opportunities to support my own curriculum. In the first year of my sea turtle curriculum I taught 15 workshops with more than 300 educators in attendance. I also create PD opportunities for teachers at conferences such as the National Science Teachers Association. See how this teacher used the curriculum after attending my session at NSTA in her blog post SeaTurtle Time - Real World Data in the Classroom.
I develop courses at the university level as well as public and staff programming at the aquarium.
In Person and Online
I have had the opportunity to develop courses at the university level. I taught as an adjunct faculty for 5 years at UNCW. I began by teaching an evening section of Introduction to Environmental Studies. I later adapted the course to teach it online to serve more students. My last semester working with UNCW I was encouraged to develop a course on the Fundamentals of Coastal and Marine Education. This hand-on, in-the-field course helped fuel my passion for informal science educator professional development.
I am currently an adjunct faculty member at the University of Mount Olive. I facilitate online lectures and labs through Moodle.
While I teaching assistant at NC State, I also helped facilitate Methods of Teaching Science 1 and 2. I have also assisted with a course on Elementary STEM Learning in Informal Settings.
These opportunities have allowed me to experience different styles of teaching at the university level.
I have experience developing events for a variety of audiences from families, to students, to the general public.
I assist with university events and outreach. I helped organize and facilitate NanoDays at NC State University. NanoDays is a national event begun by Dr. Gail Jones many years ago based on her research in NanoScale Education. As part of this event our team hosts middle school students for lab tours and NanoScience demonstrations. We also participate in outreach events such as judging science fairs and sharing educational technology at school events.
I have organized and facilitated events such as a movie premier to showcase my climate change video. I also organized events such as the first annual Family Science Festival for which I received a NC Science Festival program grant. I also assisted with the development and implementation of annual events such as Trick or Treat Under the Sea, Scales and Tails, and World Ocean Day.