Angela Bergman is the Earth Space science team leader at Westside High School in Omaha, Nebraska. She has been teaching for fourteen years and received the Presidential Award for Mathematics and Science Teaching in 2013. She has also served as a mentor teacher for 100Kin10 to help develop STEM skills and lessons for educators across the U.S.
Before the STEM experience, student-centered activities were the norm, but integrating all subject areas was not a daily occurrence in Angela’s classroom. STEM was taught as a single subject, one subject at a time. One core value of her summer experience was that STEM is actually integrated. No career, field, or job exists without being impacted by STEM skills. Students who are able to make that connection will benefit because they will understand the value of the experiences before them.
This leads to the second piece that left a lasting impact. “Experiences shape our expectations. Expectations shape our expressions. Expressions shape our experiences.” This idea has lead Angela to re-evaluate not only lessons, but also interactions with students and colleagues. The experiences of STEM is at the root of all lessons, and how STEM fits into all aspects of life is highlighted in her classroom every day. On a larger scale, Angela is currently leading a district-wide event for the 2017 solar eclipse. This event will incorporate lesso
ns across the curriculum for students at all grade levels. She was inspired to lead this event by her son. The youngest of three children, and nicknamed “the astronaut in training,” Angela wanted to ensure that all students and staff in District 66 had an authentic, safe, and fun experience of the eclipse.