Fellow Profile: Carolyn Reynolds

Carolyn Reynolds
  • G-TEAMS Cohort: 2012-13
  • Graduate Program: Optical Sciences
  • Teacher Partner: Kelly Durfey
  • School: Mountain View High School
  • Grade level: 9
  • Topics: Math 1 (Algebra), Math 2 (Geometry)

"Every student has the potential to do great things. It just takes a little motivation to get them there."

Research Interests

Carolyn Reynolds is a Master’s student in the College of Optical Sciences at the University of Arizona. Her work is focused on the correlation between optical switching, digital light processing (DLP), and data storage. She will be graduating in May 2012 and beginning work in August 2012 with Texas Instruments in Dallas, Texas.

Classroom Activities

Carolyn is working at Mountain View High School with Kelly Durfey. The focus of their partnership is to introduce their freshman Algebra and Geometry students to various ways mathematics can be applied in the real world. Students often ask “when will I ever use this again?” The goal is to answer this question in detail, giving a plethora of applications to go hand-in-hand with each lesson taught.

During the beginning stages of this program, Carolyn took the approach to observe the classroom, pinpoint learning gaps, and establishing a one-on-one relation with students through tutoring practices. She later was able to advance to the role of co-teaching and working out example problems on a normal basis. Second semester’s mission is for Carolyn to take lead of the classroom, teaching content, working examples, and assessing the students’ progress. Mr. Durfey has been extremely supportive of the gradual integration of Carolyn into the classroom.

Lessons Learned

From my experience with G-TEAMS, I have seen firsthand that students have different levels of motivation for mathematics. My objective has been to find creative ways to develop a meaningful, engaged learning environment where students will be inspired by math and how essential it is to our daily lives. The use of role playing, experiments/labs, and group work helps a great deal as long as it is closely monitored.

G-TEAMS is strategic in pairing fellows with teacher partners. My collaboration with Kelly Durfey and Mountain View High School has afforded me an irreplaceable experience doing what I love—MATH. Cheers to G-TEAMS!

Teaching Materials