Pine Valley Middle School – 2002 Winner

Joell Marchese, a science teacher from Pine Valley Middle School, created a pond outside her classroom and stocked it with plants, amphibians, reptiles and fish, so that her students could study biology and ecology “hands on.”  She created a web-based lesson plan called “Who’s Your Daddy?” to explore principles of genetics and heredity, and turned the school library into an imaginary crime scene to demonstrate how scientific principles of deduction, observation and higher-level thinking skills can be used to solve crimes.  When a student was caught smoking in school, Ms. Marchese, instead of punishing her, involved her in a science fair project regarding tobacco, which included interviewing an emphysema victim.  The science project won an award and the student never smoked again.