2016 Curriculum Library


Steven Clayton

Air Force Academy High School
Steve Clayton is a physics and engineering teacher at Air Force Academy High School on Chicago’s south side. After graduating from Glenbard North High School in 2002 he joined the US Army as a cannon crewmember in an artillery unit. He served for two years which included tours in South Korea and Iraq. Once his time in service was complete, Steve attended Illinois State University where he received his bachelors degree in Physics Education. For the BEST program, he was assigned to the motion sensitive MRI lab where he observed and worked under Dr Klatt. The lab is working on developing and improving new techniques in motion sensitive MRI that may prove to be useful for identifying and early diagnosing of Alzheimer’s disease. Steve is really looking forward to bringing his lab experience and newly developed curriculum into his high school classroom.

Steven Clayton’s Curriculum:
Waves and Medical Imaging

In this unit, students will learn about the history of medical imaging and why we need it. They will explore questions such as: Why do we need medical imaging? How did we develop modern imaging? Why are there different kinds of imaging? What are we still lacking? Students will manipulate and observe water wave interactions in a ripple tank.
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Kristian Coerper

Kenwood Academy

Kristian Coerper (Ms. C) teaches Anatomy & Physiology, and three Project Lead the Way Biomedical Sciences courses: Medical Interventions, Human Body Systems, and Principles of Biomedical Sciences at Kenwood Academy on the South Side of Chicago. Ms. C received a Masters of Arts in Teaching from the Urban Teacher Education Program at The University of Chicago, and received a B.A. in Biology and Psychology also from The University of Chicago. Ms. C believes education empowers individuals, allowing them to pursue their goals. In Ms. C’s curriculum, students will be challenged to learn how the nervous system works and how lesioning affects cognition. In addition, students will think critically, collaborate with their peers, and utilize engineering design principles to create a therapeutic strategy to promote motor recovery in stroke patients.

Kristian Coerper’s Curriculum:
The Nervous System

In order to survive the human body must evaluate and adapt to its environment, and this is primarily achieved by the nervous system. Sensory information is obtained and communicated throughout the body via the nervous system. The nervous system is the master controlling and communicating system of the body. Students are very interested in knowing why they think the way they do and this is the opportunity to have that discussion. Students will learn the anatomy and physiology of the nervous system, with an emphasis on the brain anatomy and physiology. After learning how the brain works normally, students learn how strokes can have devastating cognitive and motor deficits. The unit ends with students utilizing engineering design principles to create a therapy for stroke patients recovering from motor deficits.

If possible I suggest a semi-flipped classroom where the students review the Ppt before class for homework and take notes, and class time can be used to clarify the notes and add additional examples and/or discussion.
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Katy Jung

North-Grand High School

Katy (Ms. Jung) is a math and science teacher at North-Grand High School. Katy graduated from the five-year combined degree TEACH program at DePaul University. Since graduating, Katy has been teaching for the past two years and her teaching repertoire includes Chemistry, Algebra 2, and Biology. Katy loves teaching both math and science because this unique opportunity allows her to give insight from each discipline. During the summer of 2016, Katy worked to create her BEST curriculum with a focus on bringing neuroscience and neuroimaging into the Biology classroom.

Katy Jung’s Curriculum:
Introduction to Neuroscience

In this unit, students will be exposed to the basics of neuroscience. Current research has barely scratched the surface for understanding the human brain. As such, students will become more familiar with the “unknown” and inquisitive nature of science. After learning some basic content about the human brain, including the structure and function of neurons and functional specialization, students will be responsible for creating their own experiment using EEG headsets. The summative performance task has the students create an experiment that must inform the current bank of knowledge of the human brain in some way (e.g., understanding connections, medical diagnosis, etc.).
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Donna Larrieu

William Rainey Harper High School

Donna Larrieu has been a high school science teacher for 12 years. Donna has taught Biology, Chemistry, Physics, Earth Space and Environmental Science. For the past 6 years Donna has taught at William Rainey Harper High School. When Donna was 5 years old she realized she could start fires with her glasses! The rest is history. Donna received her BA degree in Biology from Carson Newman College and her MAT degree from Chicago State University in secondary education. Science literacy for all students is a focal point of Donna’s teaching.

Donna Larrieu’s Curriculum:
Respiratory System and the Audible Human Project

This unit is a sub unit within the overall unit, Multi Cellular Organism. Bioengineering is infused within the context of the respiratory system and the Audible Human Project of University of Illinois- Chicago. The unit starts with the structure and function of the respiratory system. Students are engaged with making a claim and supporting that claim. Building, manipulating and evaluating models to demonstrate various respiratory complications is referenced throughout the unit. Students use the internet to research the Audible Human Project and make connections to their model and the bioengineering being done there. Students are exposed to data collection and making meaning of data as they work through model activities that mirror those in the AHP lab. This quantitative approach is rooted in the engineering design loop. Collaboration within and between student groups will foster the exchange of ideas and the advancement of science literacy. Literacy is weaved throughout every lesson. Being able to read, write and speak science is an important skill in the 21st century. Common Core and the Next Generation Science Standards are the foundation of this unit. The unit culminates with a performance task. Students will demonstrate their understanding of the respiratory system and bioengineering.
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LaToya McBride

Westinghouse College Prep.

Ms. McBride is a teacher at Westinghouse College Prep. She loves her job, and says that, “Teaching science is fun, because it’s always relevant and intriguing.”  Ms. McBride graduated from Loyola University Chicago with a B.S. in Biology. After working at a school during her last years of college, she realized that teaching is what she enjoyed, and received a M.S. in Education from Quincy University.

Beside teaching Chemistry and Anatomy/Physiology, Ms. McBride works as the student council sponsor, coordinates the Westinghouse blood drives, and had the Ladies First Academy (LFA) community day class.

Ms. McBride is working on a project where students will design a way to test axial properties of tissue in terms of force and displacement in normal cardiovascular tissue versus decellularized tissue.

LaToya McBride’s Curriculum:
The Cardiovascular System

In this unit students will explore the components of blood, the internal and external anatomy of the heart, the heart’s conducting system, taking hemodynamic measurements (blood pressure, pulse, and basic ECG readings, and lastly tissue arrangement of different vessels (arteries, veins, capillaries etc.). The performance task for this unit will be to have students to come up with a way to test the force and force and displacement of healthy cardiovascular tissue.
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John O’Brien

Richard T. Crane Medical Preparatory High School

John O’Brien teaches Human Body Systems at Richard T. Crane Medical Preparatory High School. He had a fascinating and inspirational experience in Dr. Salman Khetani’s Microfabricated Tissue Models Lab this past summer. With the help of 2 toddlers, he raised 5 varieties of heirloom tomatoes this summer. He also tries to be useful in the raising of aforesaid 2 toddlers with his spouse, Elizabeth, in Chicago’s Ukrainian Village neighborhood.

John O’Brien’s Curriculum:
Of Human Testing

In this unit students will explore the history of human testing, including collecting data on cosmetics testing, use of animal models, drug disaster reports, current testing models for the liver, and limitations of current testing models.
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Valentin John Torres 2

Valentin Torres

Walter Payton College Preparatory High School

Valentin teaches Advance Placement (AP) Biology and Biotechnology courses at Walter Payton College Preparatory High School. His alma maters are Illinois Institute of Technology, Chicago State University and American College of Education where he has earned multiple degrees, such as in the field of Biology, Psychology, and Master of Education in Educational Leadership (Type 75 degree). Valentin was accepted to a highly selective Chicago Teaching Fellows alternative certification program, and became a teacher after practicing as a Clinical Psychologist at Cook County Hospital where he interned treating chronic-pain patients.

Valentin adores science, but his fervor is teaching young adults to help them find their passion in life. He understands that the quality of the teacher determines the quality of student education. Therefore, he believes in constantly improving his pedagogy. To do so, he has attended various pedagogical enhancement courses throughout his teaching career at various universities such as Northwestern University, Loyola University, Illinois Institute of Technology, and University of Illinois at Chicago through Chicago Teacher Transformation Initiative (CTTI) program.

For the past 5 years, he has participated in the Research Experience for Teachers (RET) programs and the NASA research program with Northwestern University and University of Chicago. For the past 4 years, he has participated in various research projects in cooperation with University of Illinois at Chicago Bioengineering department through a highly selective teacher research program called Chicago Science Teacher Research (CSTR).

One area of his focus is investigating aquaporin-4 produced by astrocytes and cerebrovasculature. Another focus is the development on computational model of functional hyperemia based on astrocytic and neuronal connection. His last research was on 3D modeling of functional hyperemia and 3D brain imaging.

Valentin Torres’s Curriculum:
Cutting Edge Biotechnology: Multifunctional Bone Nano-Implant Project

In this unit, students will explore nanotechnology and its impact on humanity. Students will specifically learn how to use a 123D Design APP and use a 3D printer. They will brainstorm and design 3D printed surfaces with varying roughness and nanotube diameter lengths. Students will develop a standardized method to establish the varying levels of surface roughness and nanotube diameter lengths.
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