Missouri’s teacher of the year says there needs to be good chemistry between the teacher in the classroom and the people in the community.
He’s a teacher who believes in “staging the scene and then staying out of the way so students can appreciate an unobstructed view of the wonder of it all.”
Bob Becker has been teaching chemistry for 26 years, twenty of them at Kirkwood High School. He has lectured at seminars as far away as Kuwait and Ireland on the teaching of chemistry. But Becker says better education is not just up to the teachers.”The best way to assure excellent in education is to get involved, to support your local teachers at your school, but also to volunteer. Go in and read to a class of pre-schoolers or volunteer to go on a field trip. Ask your teaches how you can get involved.”
Becker says teachers need to make teaching relevant to the students. One way he does that for the video-game generation is by writing chemistry-themed computer games and simulations—and sharing them through the internet.
Outside the classroom, Becker sponsors the Kirkwood Youth Service Club. It involves students in the community through blood and food drives, and the adoption of needy families during holidays.
Becoming Missouri’s Teacher of the Year puts Becker in the field of candidates for National Teacher of the Year.