conner_casola2Describe your teaching background. I received my AA from Valencia and my bachelor’s from UCF. I’ve taught for 10 years. Phase one was Boone from 1996 to 2003. Then I stayed home for 11 years to be a stay-at-home mom. After that, I taught at University and Cypress. Now I’m back at Boone, teaching biology.

Why do you teach science? I understand it and want to help others understand it. I value [science] and see how it impacts activities. I want to share that with other students.

Describe your teaching style. Interactive. I walk among students and have students pair up and share ideas. I love hands-on activities. I’m rational, I’ve discovered.

What is your philosophy of education? It needs to be student centered. It needs to represent the real world. It should be life long. I think my job is really is to help students hone their skills of learning to apply it to other areas. My job is to lead them to retain information and gain skills to differentiate between good and bad.

If someone were to walk into your classroom and take a picture, what would he see? You might see a lab investigation. You would see students interacting with one another and with the investigation- whether it’s through research of experimentation.

Why did you choose to work with high school students? I like to interact on an adult level. When I was this age, I enjoyed when teachers treated me as an adult.

Who most influenced you to become an educator? Three of my teachers from Valencia impacted me. Two of my female math teachers, who were good friends, were exceptionally smart. I minored in math. I also took every class my biology teacher at Valencia taught. He knew everything thoroughly and explained it well. I was challenged and had to think through things to get them right.

To what teams and clubs did you belong as a student? I was in Honor Society. I was also really involved in my youth group at church. I went early admissions to Valencia and joined chorus. I encourage students to be in clubs so they have more school pride.

If you could change one thing about yourself, what would it be? I’m an idea person, which I like, but if I could change one thing, it would be to organize those ideas into one place.

What does a perfect day look like to you? Enough sleep, first off. Relaxing with my family in the sun at the beach would be perfect. Friends and food, or as long as I’m with my family, it’s all good.

How do you want to be remembered? As someone who valued that student, someone who encouraged that student, someone who equipped them with study skills and helped them pursue goals.

By Caroline Casola

This is my second year on staff. I am a Dachshund connoisseur and love rewatching episodes of Arrested Development. You can catch me at the springs or at a hole-in-the-wall restaurant.

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