The student news site of Grand Center Arts Academy, St. Louis, MO

Ace Moen

Keyur Patel, middle school science and engineering teacher

Q: What subject do you teach?

A: I teach seventh grade science. Technically, it’s physical science, but we do get into some other topics, as well, that aren’t strictly physical science, like body systems… My other class is engineering.

Q: How many years have you been teaching?

A: This is my first year teaching.

Q: Where did you go to college and what was your major?

A: Lindenwood University… My major was middle school education with a focus on math, and then I added on the science afterwards.

Q: What is your favorite thing, so far, about being a teacher?

A: My favorite thing so far has to do with the different types of questions some students have about the topics that we cover in class, especially science, just because a lot of what we’re learning right now has to do with body systems, and so it’s really relatable. And a lot of students have a lot of interesting questions. Sometimes they’re really complex questions, but they might think that they’re really simple questions. Those are the types of questions I enjoy answering.

Q: Why did you choose to teach here at GCAA?

A: I thought it was kind of unique, given that it’s an arts school, and that was something I was interested in. Also, the science and engineering aspect of it appealed to me, as well–just the courses I’d be teaching.

Q: What are you looking forward to here at GCAA?

A: There’s a lot that I don’t know, so there’s a lot that I’m sure I would enjoy that I just don’t know of yet. And some of the things that’ll be interesting are some of the plays, acts, musicals, and performances that some of my students might have, so it’ll be interesting to see some of those.

Q: What’s your long-term goal for your students?

A: My long-term for my students would be to make sure they have all the skill sets necessary to be successful in the constantly changing world that we live in. The idea of having one job for the rest of your life doesn’t seem like it’s going to be realistic too long from now, so I think just making sure that they have adaptable skills that can make them useful and effective in whatever they choose to do.

Q: What’s been the hardest thing about your job so far?

A: I’d say, probably getting used to some of the block scheduling… because whenever I was student-teaching in college, we mainly prioritized our lessons and all our prep work in just fifty minute class periods. An hour and a half is a little different–not too different, of course, but it is a little bit of a change.

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