2014 Master Teachers: Barbara F. Westlund
Yorktown Elementary Math, Science & Technology Magnet
School, Yorktown, VA
"I am a currently a second grade teacher with Yorktown Elementary Math, Science, & Technology Magnet School in Yorktown, VA. I received my Bachelor’s Degree in Interdisciplinary Studies K-8 from Western Governor’s University. In May 2014 I earned my Master’s Certificate in Integrative STEM Education from Virginia Tech.
Students in my classroom work under the motto “Mistakes are proof that you are trying!” I began using integrative STEM education in my classroom in 2009. At the beginning of school year 2012-2013 I was designated chairman of the school’s newly formed STEM Committee. The STEM committee took on the responsibility for training all teachers from grades K-5 in STEM education. I have become familiar with the curriculums for all grade levels to be better qualified to collaborate with teachers in development of STEM lessons. As an instructional trainer for the school I have training and experience in conducting professional development sessions for peer teachers. I also conduct training sessions at the Virginia Children’s Engineering Convention yearly on integrating STEM education in the elementary classroom. I was recently recognized by the York County Superintendent, Dr. Eric Williams, with the division Apple Award for my work in furthering STEM education in York County. During the 2013-2014 school year the STEM Committee organized four school wide STEM days that focused on background experiments and activities related to the NASA Exploration Design Challenge. The culmination of the year’s efforts will be June 4th when the whole school participates in this design challenge.
When I am not engaged in activities related to teaching and learning I enjoy spending time with my family. My husband Ken is employed as a Research Analyst by the Department of the Army. He is a retired Army Officer. I have 4 wonderful children that are my pride and joy and 3 (4 in October) grandchildren that I adore. In addition to enjoying my family I love reading, knitting, quilting, and sewing. "