Be open, be calm, be flexible and ask for help – Episode 21

This teaching veteran has experienced a variety of changes throughout her 37 years of teaching. She says it’s because she uses the “F word” often – FLEXIBLE!

Flexibility and being a life-long learner helped Catherine Mohr pivot to distance learning when the novel COVID-19 forced school closures.

As the fifth-grade science teacher at Princeton Elementary School, Catherine uses a variety of teaching methods to keep her students engaged, especially hands-on experiments. With the sudden shift to distance learning, she knew she couldn’t simply provide assignments students completed and submitted for grading. Instead, she learned the basics of Big Blue Button, a video conferencing platform, and leaned on her students to help her problem solve any issues.

Even though her home wasn’t her preferred location, Catherine was excited to continue sharing live demonstrations of the science standards. For one lab, she showed static electricity using four strands of tinsel, a wool mitten and a PVC pipe to demonstrate the reaction. See the video below.

Demo video

For students who were not participating, this self-professed “Mama bear,” made it a mission to get them back into the live sessions. She would not allow her students to disengage from learning.

Listen to this episode to hear why Principal Amanda Maxwell nominated her for a City of Orlando Excellence in Teaching recognition. Catherine will be featured in News-6’s Fourth of July celebration.

MEET THE GUEST – (This episode taped June 22, 2020)

Headshot Catherine Mohr

Catherine Mohr teaches fifth-grade science teacher at Princeton Elementary School. She’s been there for the past five years and previously taught at Lockhart Elementary for 29 years. She wore many hats there: exceptional education teacher, third-grade teacher, science resource teacher, and reading and math resource teacher. She is a University of Central Florida alumni with a Bachelor’s degree in Elementary Education, a Master’s degree in Exceptional Education and an endorsement in Gifted Education. She was Lockhart ES’ Teacher of the Year in 2001, earned a Disney Teacherterrific Award, and received Duke Energy Grants in 2018 and 2019.

2 Responses so far.

  1. Pat Kelly says:

    Mrs Mohr and I taught at the same school! She is very creative-well structured and sincerely cares about her students! Cathy’s classroom is hands-on and detailed science lessons full of successful learning! I always felt it would be delightful to be in Cathy’s class!

  2. Thea Sinclair says:

    Ms. Mohr is the kind of teacher I would love to have. She respects and engages her students along with teaching them science. I hope OCPS makes use of her as a mentor teacher and as an inspiration to other teachers as well as to her students. Too bad every student could not have been with her during this time of distance learning.

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