Philly's own W.B. Saul High School for Agricultural Sciences has been featured in the news as of late for its unique teaching style, and the Coalition is proud to be working with two of the school's science teachers!
Jessica McAtamney is an environmental science teacher at Saul High School and was just named a "Champion of Change" for innovating and educating her community. With this honor, she had the opportunity to travel to the White House to share her ideas.
We got to know this oustanding teacher when she was granted a Dow Innovation Grant in 2012 by the Math + Science Coalition to create a compost manure system to better manage waste in the school.
The project required students to use what they have learned about biology and technology to create the system and to monitor temperature, need for aeration and additional waste. The system is fed by yard waste, manure from horses at the school and food waste from the school cafeteria.
McAtamney was a Peace Corps volunteer and a former participant in the Fulbright Japan-U.S. Teacher Exchange Program for Education for Sustainable Development.
Read about McAtamney's innovative teaching, this unique school, and her creative students:
Theresa Maas-Anger is another science teacher at Saul High School who received a grant from the Math + Science Coalition in 2011. Her project, titled “Molecular and Cellular Claymation in the Digital Age," allowed her students created stop-motion animation videos of complex chemical and biological processes with cameras purchased with the grant.
The project required critical thinking by the students: “While the students were making the movies, they were challenged to find ways to portray the transitions between the stages of mitosis that are delineated in the textbook,” said Maas-Anger. She added that her students “really seemed to enjoy making their movies and I really feel that they retained much more information about the cell cycle for a longer period of time.”
Over the three years of the grant program, the Math + Science Coalition has awarded grants to 37 Philadelphia math and science teachers totaling more than $23,000. Major funding for the grants program was provided by the Dow Chemical Company in 2012. Learn more about the grants here.