Honored Educator’s Challenges, Inspirations & Resources

Educators have faced learning environments unknown to any of us before, so we’re delighted to feature local teachers who share their challenges and their inspirations.

One of our honored educators from East Longmeadow, who sent us her profile, writes: 

My name is Amie Singh and I’m in my 9th year teaching 8th Grade Science at Birchland Park Middle School. In my 20+ years in education, I’ve taught many levels of learners, from preschool to adult ESL and GED classes. I grew up in Hawaii, went to college at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL, and am working on my MA in Science at UMASS Amherst in their Science Education Online (SEO) program. I’ve been a GBH-NEPM Education Ambassador and have worked for the last two years with DESE’s Innovative Science Assessment program, redefining the MCAS to be more representative of how students learn.

I think that this is an important time to be an educator because our roles have changed – our purpose is no longer just to teach our content – it is vitally important for us to teach our students to be open-minded skeptics, requiring data and proof as they dig for the truth.

Here are Amie’s responses to questions we posed:

If you could be any PBS Kids Character, who would you choose?  I think I would be Cleo from the old “Between the Lions” show. She is a huntress who is good at tracking down information – she is a good investigator and uses stories to teach her cubs life lessons. As a science teacher, I see my role as an investigator, helping my students to ask questions and find answers. I’m also attached to this show because it was the show that made reading cool for my own children and helped them to become lifelong readers and learners. [PBS LearningMedia’s Between the Lions Early Learning resources]

Who inspired you to become an educator or has been a role model for you?  I have two – the current administrators at my school: Dr. Timothy Allen and Mr. Conor Martin. They are my role models because of their curiosity, their infectious enthusiasm for learning, and for their deep love for all students.

What has been a particular challenge for you as an educator in the past year or two?  The biggest challenge for me has been how to spark curiosity in my students. The students in front of me right now have not been in a “normal” learning environment since the spring of 2020 and had become used to staring at screens at home. It has been a challenge to get them to remember how to wonder.
Do you have a favorite website, lesson, activity, or project that you want to share as a resource for other educators?PBSLearningMedia – I especially like The Last Generation Climate Change and the Marshall Islands because it presents the problem of climate change in a way that middle school students can identify with. I think the resources in the website around climate change are some of the best I have seen.






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