Meet the Switch Classroom Teacher Advisory Council

The Switch Classroom curriculum is all teacher-created. Meet the teachers that are currently serving on our Teacher Advisory Council, creating new content and helping us grow Classroom!

Lynn Kistler

My name is Lynn Kistler and I have been a teacher since 2003 holding a B.S. in Chemistry and a M.A. in Physics. I have taught a wide range of courses during my career including chemistry, A.P. Chemistry, physics, physical science, earth & space science, and A.P. Environmental Science. I work at a suburban school outside of Pittsburgh, PA where I have served as the High School Science Curriculum Leader since 2006. In addition to my curriculum and teaching roles, I also help to plan, coordinate, and work in a local community garden that provides produce to a local food pantry. I am also a trained Pennsylvania Master Naturalist and have been involved in many service and citizen science projects.

The documentary, Switch, was one of the first films I showed when I began to teach A.P Environmental Science in 2010. I was thrilled to find a resource that provided a balanced and nonpartisan overview of energy. The energy labs and other Switch videos quickly became part of both my environmental and physics courses. After working on a survey about my use of Switch resources, I was asked to join the Teacher Advisor Council and have been excited and enthusiastic about creating the curriculum for Switch Classroom. I share my experience with SEA and Switch Classroom at any opportunity including state, regional and national conferences. I am proud of the work that the TAC has accomplished thus far and look forward to continuing the mission of providing quality energy education for all.

James Corboy

Jim Corboy currently teaches 7th and 8th grade science at Avalon K-12 on Catalina Island in California. A former graduate student of Dr. Scott Tinker, Jim was the one who first had the idea of making a curriculum for teachers based around the videos produced by Switch Energy Alliance. He was also instrumental in recruiting the original Teacher Advisory Council members and developing the curriculum for Switch Classroom.

When Jim isn't teaching, he enjoys spending time with his fiance and surfing.

Ruthann McComb

Ruthann currently teaches AP Environmental Science at Elkin High School in North Carolina. A founding member of the TAC, Ruthann is heavily involved with all things environmental science. She has a Bachelors of Science degree in Science Education, concentrating in Earth Sciences. She has also been heavily involved with the Environmental Literacy Fellows through the Center for Public Engagement with Science at UNC-Chapel Hill. Ruthann is also an AP Environmental Science exam grader for the College Board.

When Ruthann isn't teaching or doing work with the TAC, she enjoys spending time with her husband and two sons in the great outdoors.

Kathy Daniels

My name is Kathy Daniels and I teach AP and on-level Environmental Science, AP, Dual Credit, and on-level Biology, and integrated chemistry and physics. I teach students in grades 9-12 at Mississinewa High School in Gas City, Indiana, and serve as the science department chair. I also coach Science Olympiad. I am the Lucas Education online teacher facilitator to the APES Knowledge in Action curriculum and get to guide teachers around the world who are using the KIA project-based learning curriculum for AP Environmental Science. I am a teacher-leader for Education Projects and Partnerships helping with teacher workshops and curriculum development for Grownextgen.org, Feed the World at Ohiocorneducation.org, and Nourishthefuture.org. I also work as an adjunct professor for Indiana University throughout the school year and for Purdue University in the summers. I belong to NSTA, NABT, IABT and am a district representative for the Hoosier Association of Science Teachers here in Indiana. I really enjoy the creative part of designing and writing curriculum so I am looking forward to being a part of this process with the Switch Energy Alliance Teacher Advisory Council. I hope being a part of the TAC will allow me to help students to a deeper understanding of both energy and the science behind it.

In my free time, I volunteer for The Salvation Army and our community civic theatre. I love acting, directing, and creating the lighting and sound design for the shows. I have three amazing grown sons who are out changing the world in their own ways through music, theatre, and science. I also have a beautiful granddaughter and a super supportive husband. I love to hunt for geodes and fossils and spend time in nature. The areas of my life where I spend most of my energy nowadays are in environmental and social justice.

Sabrina Ewald

My name is Sabrina Ewald and I am currently teaching in Frisco ISD at Centennial High School, where I teach AP Environmental Science and Earth and Space Science. For the past 17 years in FISD, I have helped implement and grow the science elective classes on my campus and have assisted in developing the district curricula for Environmental Systems, Earth and Space Science, and Astronomy. I am an active participant in the University of Texas Hildebrand Teacher Leadership Program as well as a member of the education committee for AAPG Southwest Section. I am currently working with Magnitude.io designing classroom lessons related to their experiments on the ISS. I was recently selected to participate on the NAGT K-12 Educators AdHoc Committee, which committee works to improve and expand NAGT's support for K-12 educators in their teaching and learning of the Earth.

My passion for geoscience education extends beyond my classroom as I seek opportunities to continue learning and growing professionally. What better way to do that than by working on the Teacher Advisory Council. Growth and improvements in my classroom lessons are a direct result from being around other amazing educators and professionals, like those who are part of the council. I want to give back and share valuable resources I have discovered and be part of the continued growth of Switch Classroom. I have been fortunate to present and share my lessons at Earth Educators' Rendezvous and CAST, so my goal is to continue being a resource for other educators through my participation on the Teacher Advisory Council. Switch Classroom has been an invaluable tool in my classes, and I want to be part of the outreach that exposes teachers to this wonderful resource and help them seamlessly integrate it into their existing lessons.

Chris Hill

My name is Chris Hill and I am a science teacher at Yarmouth High School in Yarmouth, Maine. I have been teaching for 19 years and am currently teaching AP Environmental Science "APES," Marine Biology, Chemistry, and Anatomy & Physiology. In addition to teaching, I'm also the advisor to the class of 2023, serve on a Student Assistance Team and coach JV girls Tennis.

When I'm not teaching, I'm a four season outdoor enthusiast that enjoys running, hiking, camping, boating and skiing with my family. Most recently I picked up a "pandemic hobby" of learning how to do small repairs/maintenance on my automobiles and small engines at home. Energy, specifically electricity, has always fascinated me and I am excited to work on the TAC and contribute to the excellent work that has been done with the Switch Energy curriculum. As a teacher of APES I am very aware of the current challenges we face as both a nation and the world in terms of energy equity for everyone. I hope that my many years of experience in the classroom will bring some new insights and ideas to the SEA platform.

Ben Schosek

My name is Ben Schosek, and I am a science teacher at Topsail High School in coastal North Carolina. I currently teach students in grades 9-12 in both AP Environmental Science and an Oceanography elective course. I have been teaching since 2003, first in upstate NY then here in coastal NC. I have been an AP Grader and have worked with the College Board for 5 years now and have been able to rub elbows with some of the top Environmental Science teachers and professors in the country. Living on the coast of NC has also allowed me to work with the local university, UNC-Wilmington, and to forge many great relationships with the school's faculty and staff. I am also the advisor of the Ecology Club at my school and have helped foster many connections with the local community with that group. I began and still continue to teach so that I may challenge students to engage in real-world science and to affect change in their local communities.

Working with Switch Energy Alliance through the teacher advisory council is an opportunity that I couldn't pass up. I have used the amazing resources found on Switchon.org in my own classroom with great success. The resources they provide form the foundation of how I now teach my students about energy. From the basics of each energy source, to the fine details of how politics and energy meet, Switch provides everything a student would need to know in a balanced format. I am glad to have the opportunity to "pay back" the rewards I have gotten from their resources.

Trisa Swenson

I'm Trisa Woolley Swenson. I teach Chemistry and AP Environmental Science at a comprehensive inner city school in Las Vegas, Nevada. I have taught for 13 years at the same school. I am the Key Club advisor for a very active club. I love the service aspect of Key Club. I volunteered in my children's classrooms when they were younger and for many different service activities in my community and church. I have been married for over 34 years and have 3 grown children, all married and 4 beautiful grandsons with a granddaughter coming in July. I love to travel and have traveled many places around the globe. I have also lived and studied in France and Germany as well as the USA (California, Utah, and Washington D.C.).

I like the Switch energy curriculum and have used it for a couple of years in my AP classes. It was especially helpful during the last school year when we taught everything remotely and online. I want to be a part of the Teacher Advisory Council to be able to give input from the front lines of teaching. I'm grateful for the opportunity to work with other educators from different parts of the country.

Julie Valsaint

Hello! My name is Julie Valsaint and I teach 5th grade science. I have been in Education for 17 years. I have taught 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 6th, 8th, and High School Literature. Over my years of teaching I have found Science to be my sweet spot! I love to share experiments and projects with my students. Watching their excitement over hands-on activities is one of my favorite things about teaching.

I have been married for 17 years and have 2 sons, 13 and 9. As a family we love to travel, hike, and enjoy our summers together. I am always looking for opportunities to travel through grant writing as a teacher, and this past summer I was able to take my whole family on one of my excursions. It was definitely a highlight for us all! Becoming part of the Switch family is something I am looking forward to and I can't wait to share it with you.


  

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