Noyce Science MTF Cohort I Spotlight

Kristoff Berzins

Kristoff Berzins Omaha Central, Omaha Public Schools, Omaha NE

I think it is important to keep the focus of education research on the educators and the students. As a Noyce Master Teacher Fellow I want to be able to ensure that the classroom teachers have the opportunity to continue their own education by helping them develop better pedological techniques and learning about new technology and strategies to better serve their students. I also believe that inquiry science is an excellent way to teach students about abstract concepts within the scientific world however it is very important to have excellent structure and scaffolding to support that methodologies in place in order to ensure success on the students part while minimizing their frustration and misconceptions regarding scientific fields.

Leadership experience in science education:
University of Nebraska Omaha Teacher-Researcher Project Partnership

Royonna	Bristol

Royonna Bristol Omaha Bryan High School, Omaha Public Schools, Omaha NE

A "grand challenge" in science education involves deeply rooted hegemonic systems present within institutions that heavily influence student identity, self efficacy and achievement, especially amongst BIPOC. As a Noyce Master Teacher Fellow, I am provided with opportunities to explore the intersectionality of nature, education, and culture. I also hope to gain a deeper understanding of pedagogical methods and theories in science education research. Using the lens of informal science education (e.g. identity work and personal narratives), my ultimate goal is to develop inclusive, equitable, and culturally sustainable programming for students and the community that allows BIPOC to explore and engage in environmentally conscious experiences.

Leadership experience in science education:
Professional Learning Community Facilitator

Lora	Carpenter-Janike

Lora Carpenter-Janike Dawes Middle School, Lincoln Public Schools, Lincoln NE

As a Noyce Master Teacher Fellow, my goal is to reach all students with challenging, rich science content that pushes their thinking and develops their skills, abilities and confidence. I hope students have experiences in my class that activate their interests and curiosities so they can increase their individual learning by seeking out further information around their personal interests. One of the most empowering parts of education is the choice it provides students for their future. The importance of equally empowering all students for their futures is at the heart of my role as an educator. As a middle school teacher, I see that the importance of student vision plays out with selecting high school paths and preparation for student's future career and life choices. Mitigating the effects the pandemic had on student learning and participation, I would like to increase student connectedness to peers through learning activities and cognitive engagement.

Leadership experience in science education:
Dawes Science Liaison, MS Curriculum selection committee

Corey Gallegos

Corey Gallegos Central Middle School, Millard Public Schools, Omaha NE

Millard Central Middle School is the most diverse middle school in our district with the highest numbers of free / reduced lunches and sizable populations of ELL students, refugees and students with different abilities. Over seven years, I have observed that the diversity of our student body continues to steadily increase, and the trend will probably continue. Anecdotally speaking, it also appears as if more students with trauma are entering my classroom each year. It is imperative that teachers stay ahead of the curve if we are to meet the needs of our students. Being an informed consumer is one of the best ways I engage my science students. Educating them on how to think critically such as finding support for claims with sound evidence and solid reasoning helps prepare them for decisions they will soon be making as adults including shopping for healthcare, buying cars, choosing post-secondary education, promoting sustainable living and exercising the right to vote. Not every student wants to be a scientist or, as hard as it might be to say, even likes science, but it is imperative that teachers continue to develop informed science consumers. The Noyce Master Teaching Fellowship will help me do this.

Leadership experience in science education:
NSCAS Summative Science Task Assessment Writer & Content Bias Reviewer, 8th grade Science PLC Leader, Millard Public Schools Science Curriculum Advisory Committee, University of Colorado at Denver Outstanding Graduate of the School of Education and Human Development, NSTA National Conference Presenter.

Peter Gomez

Peter Gomez Hemingford High School, Hemingford Public Schools District #10, Hemmingford, NE

As a professional educator and a Noyce Master Fellow, I would like to increase my effectiveness in the classroom, and mentor other teachers who strive to be better at teaching. I as I continue to network with other Noyce Fellows, regional teachers and teachers within my district I want to help foster a growth mindset in others.

Leadership experience in science education:
Science Department Chair, Science Alignment Team Co-Chair, District Curriculum and Assessment Director - Bridgeport NE., Summative and Formative Assessment Writing Team Member - Nebraska Department of Ed.

Kim Gradoville

Kim Gradoville Westside High School, Omaha Public Schools, Omaha NE

I hope to help address the lack of diversity in upper level science classes despite an increasing diversity in our building. I hope to develop skills and strategies through my work in the Noyce Program to make my classroom a more welcoming place for all students. I want to improve my use of the skills highlighted in the Nebraska Science Standards to help students see chemistry in their entire world...not just in my classroom.

Leadership experience in science education:
Course leader for Chemistry Honors and Chemistry AP

Scott King

Scott King Kearney High School, Kearney Public Schools, KEARNEY NE

Access to science education at the elementary level is not just fun for students but a critical necessity for education. Unfortunately, elementary students are often given only 20 minutes of science instruction per day - often less - in favor of increasing math and reading instruction in hopes of boosting test scores. This critical lack of access to science education is often made worse in schools with low socioeconomic status. I want to utilize storyline-based instructional methods to bring science education to the forefront of the elementary classroom curricula as students learn about science topics through reading and mathematics instead of keeping them as isolated topic areas.

Leadership experience in science education:
NATS Past-President, NPPS Curriculum Writing

Alison Klein

Alison Klein Kearney High School, Kearney Public School, Kearney NE

The Next Generation Science Standards, that were used to guide the Nebraska College and Career Ready Standards for Science, advocate for equitable learning opportunities for all science students. Research supports that when students are provided with equitable learning opportunities all students are able to engage in meaningful science learning. This challenge, of equitable instruction, goes beyond the classroom and permeates our education systems. A goal I have that will influence my professional development and support the goals of Kearney Public Schools is to build a stronger understanding of the components of equitable science instruction that apply to the classroom, building and district levels. My work towards National Board Certification will support me in implementing equitable practices in the classroom. My roles on building and district MTSS, School Improvement and curriculum teams will provide opportunities to create relationships with stakeholders within KPS and neighboring districts to meet this goal.

Leadership experience in science education:
NATS Board Member, KHS School Improvement Team, KHS MTSS Building Team Member, NASA Science Educator for MAVEN Project

Nicole Miller

Nicole Miller Lakeview Jr/Sr High School, Lakeview Community Schools, Columbus NE

As I grow my leadership skills, I would like to work in the areas of rural access to science education opportunities and helping underrepresented students see themselves as members of the scientific community. I want to help connect teachers and students in rural areas with each other and with resources that are in their communities as well as resources that tend to exist in more urban areas such as universities and research institutions. I would also like to help bridge the spaces and gaps that prevent some students from seeing themselves as pursuing a career in a scientific field. Finding ways to help students see themselves as scientists will help us include the diverse voices that are needed to solve the challenges we face and answer questions we haven't even thought about asking yet.

Leadership experience in science education:
Presidential Award for Excellence in Mathematics and Science Teaching (PAEMST) national awardee (secondary science, 2015), Science department PLC facilitator, Nebraska science standards revision team (2015-1016)

Ethan Van Winkle

Ethan Van Winkle Lincoln Southeast High School, Lincoln Public Schools, Lincoln NE

My goal as a Noyce Master Teacher Fellow is to connect with the science teacher communities locally and nationally to develop robust grading practices in the realm of physics using standards-based grading and constructing a socioscientific issues (SSI) curriculum surrounding it. I aim to increase engagement and generate a more inclusive and equitable classroom by implying these goals. I want all students to see themselves as scientists. Simply ‘all students’ means everyone to me. All people should have access to learning science to fulfill our natural curiosity. As teachers we should work to tear down any barriers that may try to interfere with this. We are all learning something new every day. My job will be to inspire the people I meet to want to be life-long learners, always searching for new ways to analyze their surroundings.

Leadership experience in science education:
Physical Science Curriculum Committee, Hyde Observatory Board Member, NITARP

Joyne Zigler

Joyne Zigler Grand Island Senior High School, Grand Island Public Schools, Grand Island, NE

As a former teacher in a small school with seven different courses to teach every day, I empathize with teachers facing the challenge of creating coherent standards based lessons for several courses. Growing levels of diversity is a beautiful phenomenon in classrooms, but also augments that challenge. My desire is to address this grand challenge as a Noyce Master Teacher Fellow. My goal is to provide ongoing individualized professional development to meet the needs of teachers. This program would equip teachers with an understanding of the Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) and the ability to implement best practices to support those standards in an equitable and inclusive classroom. In order to more effectively lead this kind of change I plan to become more involved at the state and national level in the areas of science education and diversity, inclusion, and equity. With increased involvement and digging deeper into the research about science education research in coursework, I will also hone my skills in the areas of NGSS, pedagogy, and leadership.

Leadership experience in science education:
High School Department Chair, High School Science Task Force Member, PLC Curriculum Lead, STEAM Camp Summer Program Leader, STEAM After School Program Sponsor, Thriving Minds Virtual Summer Program Creator, Thriving Minds Virtual After School Program Creator, SCILLSS Assessment Task Developer, Presenter at NATS