Carol Ann Lutz
Upper School Science Teacher, Grades 7 & 8
Education: B.S. in Psychology, B.S. in Communications, Oberlin College; Masters Degree in Education, Marist College; Endorsements in CT, Teacher-Leader, Elementary Science and Middle School, General Science.
When did you come to GCS?
I came to GCS in 2014, after teaching for a number of years in public, private and parochial schools. Prior to becoming a teacher, I volunteered with the Peace Corps and worked as a technical writer and manager of computer design and manufacturing systems in NYC.
Do your students participate in any “hands-on” science lessons?
My students work on lab projects, experiments and STEM projects. In Life Sciences, our 7th Graders explore our campus to identify trees based on their leaves and stem structure, and create a one-way valve structure as part of our Body Systems unit. In 8th Grade Physical Science, 8th Graders investigate speed comparisons with different physical activities, and soon they’ll be creating bridges and hydraulic machines in STEM.
How do you help students recognize science in their daily lives?
A few times a week we begin class with “Idea Starters,” which introduces current events in science. Most recently we talked about the Webb telescope as part of a discussion on gravity. A group of students is also working on a recycling project and bottle collection that will allow us to buy a goat through Heifer International that will provide milk and income for a poor family in another part of the world.
How do you hope your class prepares students for the rigors of high school?
Throughout the Upper School, we focus on the “4 C’s”: Creativity, Collaboration, Critical Thinking, and Communication. These are 21st Century skills that will help our students to excel in high school and beyond. Specifically in Science class, I want students to think beyond the obvious, and consider new ways of solving problems. They work in groups and as partners to analyze data and to document their learning in the form of graphs and lab reports.
What keeps you busy outside of GCS?
I am a self-taught Origami enthusiast - I was once a book editor for OrigamiUSA and was a Board member as well. I try to incorporate origami into my classroom, and the students always enjoy seeing new creations.