Credit to Hannah Wilson

(From left) Chris Dalton, Matt Howard and Dawn Hahn investigate the crime scene of Anna Garcia, a person of study in Principals of Biomedical Science. All three teachers have taken on new PLTW classes this year.

10. Howard, Hahn and Dalton Take Charge of PLTW Classes

This year, three science teachers are taking over Project Lead the Way (PLTW) classes. Chris Dalton will be teaching Principles of Biomedical Sciences, Matt Howard will be teaching Medical Interventions and Dawn Hahn will be teaching Biomedical Innovations.

In previous years, Dalton has taught biology in the traditional classroom setting, whether it be genetics or AP Biology.  This year he transitioned to teaching the first level of the PLTW Biomedical Sciences track, Principles of Biomedical Sciences.  Dalton believes that this class is a great opportunity for students to learn problem solving skills, but he has had to change his teaching style a bit.

“This is a transition, because I was very much trained in the old college way,” Dalton said. “I’m learning to become a little more hands-off, which is hard for me, and let them do a lot of discovery on their own.”

Howard stepped up to take over Medical Interventions, a class he has his undergraduate degree in. Formally taking this class helped him a lot during the summer training, which all three teachers were required to take. It was a two week class at Missouri S&T from 8 a.m. until 5 p.m. to acquire the certification to teach their new PLTW classes.

“[The training] was pretty rigorous, but for myself and the group I was in, we were stellars at it and we had shortened days and finished before the two weeks we were scheduled,” Howard said. “We all picked up on it very well and had an absolute blast. It was kind of summer camp for adult science dorks.”  

After teaching Principles of Biomedical Science for five years and Human Body Systems for four, Hahn is looking forward to teaching Biomedical Innovations for the first time. This class is the last class of the PLTW science courses and consists of multiple problems that student can solve, one of which being a year-long research project where students can pick the topic to study.

“The thing I’m enjoying the most right now is being able to talk to my students and really discover the level of understanding that they have about the topics that we’ve gone through,” Hahn said. “I have been mind blown by the problems that they want to solve and the background knowledge that they have already in order to approach it. It validates everything that we’ve done from day one in PBS and to see students are recalling what they did three or four years ago and figuring out a way to use it and apply it to a situation, and that’s life, no matter what industry you’re in.”

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