VINCENT WRAY NSF Teaching Partner
Shelley High School, Shelley School District 60

Years Teaching:
18 years

B.S. in Dairy Science Utah State and M.ed. in curriculum and instruction I.S.U.

Graduate Partner:

Special Accomplishments/Interests:
I have many things I am proud of students who have scored in the top four in Idaho on the national Chem Olympiad Test, robotics team taking first in the Portland regional their first time, the many grants and teacher of the year awards. Interests: water sports, mechanics, and farming.

How will you continue to integrate an aspect of GK-12 and your partnership with graduate students into your teaching, philosophy, etc.?
The robotics club will be an on going thing here at Shelley High School. We will be competing each year to return to the national championship. It is not just the winning that is important, but how the students have benefitted from the experience. It is wonderful to watch as they get the task and begin to brain storm to accomplish it. I have really benefitted from the help of the graduate students. The idea that I need help my students learn to give back and try and prepare them as they go on to college and in to the job fields. So that they can help their own children and give back in general to their schools in their areas. I hope to help them see the valve of this approach.

How has the GK-12 experience changed you, and how has your participation changed the GK-12 project?
I do not know how my participation has changed the GK-12. I hope that the graduate students themselves have been changed as they have been in my class room. That they see how important these students are and how they can make a difference in the lives of people like these students. I hope they will give to their schools and especially to their own children. I see every day how important parent involvement is in the education of the students in my class room.

I have been changed immensely by my experiences in the project. First I have gained a new skill set. Things like the programming and electronics the world of robotics in general are all being used now in my class. There were fund-raising and getting the robot ready for competition. The robotics has opened a new road to influence students on their journey to careers. The ability to take a concept and in six weeks make it a reality is so cool. The students the last two years have been very interested in the First program and it has influenced their career decisions. Second I have a renewed appreciation for how important it is to have outside help in educating these young people. It matters when a parent is involved in the education of their student. Also that outsiders (mentors) can have a great influence on individual students and this influence can make all the difference in the choices that the student will make about a lot of things not just careers. This influence can be more important than the actual learning in my classroom. Lastly this project has given me a new reason and an avenue to help students choose math, science, and engineering careers. I run a program in the summer with the INL to have high school students get a leg up on their career goals by coming to the lab and have an eight week summer internship. This is a class time year around internship and that really benefits students in the career decision department. I have been very improved by the experience of this project and what it has done for us at Shelley High School and more importantly the individual students.

Profile date: April 2007