Passion. Passion, is what drives me in every aspect of my life. Since I was a little girl, I dreamed of being a teacher. I often played “school” and would design bulletin boards in our house thinking I was the most creative kid on the block. However, as I grew older my interests changed and I became passionate about the inquiry of science. My family and past experiences encouraged me to apply my science knowledge to the medical field or partake in scientific research. Listening to this influence, I determined I could make a huge impact in the lives of others as a pharmacist. It took about a month into my graduate studies before I discovered pharmacy was not where my passion was rooted. I loved the academics and the chemistry behind it, but I was not personally satisfied with the career as a whole. I realized my vision had been clouded by high expectations and fear of disappointment. However, deep down I always knew my passion was to teach. This desire was there when I was small and kept shining throughout my entire life as I took on leadership roles and jobs as a tutor. I had just never paused to notice it before. All it took was some deep soul searching and removing the blinders to realize I could combine both my passions for biology and chemistry, and my passion for teaching to truly make a positive impact in the world. My name is Ashley, and I am a firm believer in the phrase “Everything in life happens for a reason.” I am thankful for the opportunities that have led me to this program, and I could not be more ecstatic to become a secondary education science teacher.
Our life stories, interactions and the history of the world are what lead us to where we stand today. It is often difficult to imagine what the world was like years ago before scientists made discoveries of elements, gas laws, and chemical reactions. How did scientists think back then compared to the scientists in present day? What evidence was needed in order to design something so grand as the periodic table? Today’s understanding of the world stems from the knowledge of the past and our ability to apply it to present situations. Throughout this blog, I plan to investigate the history of chemistry and the ways to introduce scientific thought into the high school classroom. I want to discover ways to make this integration of history exciting, applicable, and innovative. Providing students with a historical context to actively investigate concepts can provide more interest and a instill a deeper desire to learn and think like a scientist. Sometimes, it is difficult to pause when everyone is so caught up in a concept. However, by taking time to understand how the concept, idea or theory was discovered, one can gain a better understanding of what they were trying to learn in first place.
I have a degree in molecular biology, but chemistry is my passion. I feel that the history of chemistry was left out in many of my courses and discussing it would have enhanced my understanding. It would have provided a more relevant context to indicate what we were doing was no just solving another equation. As a result, I want to learn more about this topic in order to effectively teach my students. I look forward to partaking in this blogging journey with you to discover the history of chemistry and how it can be used to inspire excitement, innovation and inquiry in my students.