As an English teacher, my goals include teaching students techniques for reading comprehension, tools for engaging in deep discussion, and methods of clear writing. In our ninth grade curriculum, we also work with students on the college and career aspects. Here, I teach students how to write college entrance essays, resumes, and goal setting documents. We also work on presenting, collaborating, and research. As part of this time of discovery, I also have them research various career possibilities to share with their peers. One of my main focal points is STEM-related vocations.
During my Ply Gem experience, I am conducting research myself – looking at the impact of temperature and humidity on product, as well as studying reflectivity and cool roofs. (Not “cool” as in “awesome”, but in the temperature sense! Although, I must say, the products Ply Gem produces are aesthetically pleasing – the stone is especially beautiful.)
Aside from all the different disciplines of engineering I encounter daily, which will help me share career options with students, the experiments I’m doing will directly impact the lesson plans I’m creating for high school science and English classes. From chemistry to earth & environmental science to reading and discussions in English, students will benefit from my work here. The chemical engineer is going to speak to the students, the plant manager will take them on a tour, and the science teachers will implement the lesson plans I create on heat islands, meteorology, and UV reactions.
Above is Aaron, who is an engineer from Ireland. Today we set up a wireless weather station that will transmit data to the base, which takes interior measurements. I’m creating a spreadsheet to track the weather and then compare that to the various tests they run throughout the day on the materials and the product. Sun and weather play a big role in the construction industry.