One of the most obvious connections from my internship experience to my classroom is my curriculum product. It’s been great to have supported time to develop what I feel are really awesome lesson plans. Thanks to this internship – and the feedback from other dynamic educators in this program – I feel like I now have a fantastic cell organelle/cell membrane unit to implement when I return to school. I think my students are going to really enjoy the inquiry-based laboratories I’ve developed and also the opportunity to practice reading/writing scientifically. Well, okay, they might not enjoy the reading and writing BUT I think I’ve made those activities as engaging as possible. And for my honors students – even though I’m sure they’d rather be playing Minecraft – I know they will at least enjoy the challenge.
Other, slightly less tangible connections include 1) my renewed enthusiasm for my profession and 2) the network of scientists and other educators I’ve met along this journey. I’ve always loved my job and I don’t think that’s going to change, but I am approaching this upcoming school year with a different level of inspiration and enthusiasm than I would normally. I guess you could say I feel empowered; both to enact change and to persevere through the challenges and negativity you can sometimes face at schools. Part of that is due to the support system of people I’ve developed relationships with along the way.
Overall, I’m getting excited for this upcoming school year so I can implement some of the things I’ve learned this summer!