Hello, One. Hello, All. Let me first and foremost say how EXCITED (Super Excited) I am to be a part of Project Exploration! My name is Tarana Wroten. I am a product of the Chicago Public Schools (Andrew Carnegie Elementary School and Morgan Park High School). For my post-secondary education, I traveled to the bayou and attended Grambling State University in Louisiana where I obtained my Bachelors of Science in Biology with a minor in Chemistry. Currently, I am obtaining my Masters in Arts Teaching Biological Science 5th-12th. Science for me is LIFE (and I mean that both literally and figuratively). My passion for science started in my science class in elementary school. I was an inquisitive kid and always wanted to know why? Why if I changed this variable it gives me a different outcome? Why is this one way but another way? My passion grew in high school where I took both AP Biology as well as AP Chemistry. My teachers also saw my hunger for knowledge in science and pushed me to my fullest potential. Every science fair I entered, I placed, and one year made it to city (pats self on the back). I came across Project Exploration by pure luck. I was looking in the STEM field for jobs and came across their ad, and all I could say was PERFECT. It combined my love for science as well as my desire for teaching. The program also shares my beliefs that all students should be exposed to all areas of STEM regardless of their social or economic background.
I’m overjoyed to be a part of this program because I can bring knowledge and ultimately awareness to the STEM field where in some areas of Chicago, some students aren’t given the opportunity to learn on a thorough and exciting level. I have a sense of fulfillment giving students the knowledge and the hands on activities to not only open and expand their minds but also being a real life example of someone who looks like them, has some of the same types of experiences, and can, like them, be successful in a male dominated field. My plans for my students to learn will be through educational play to let them know education is not always sentences in a textbook. You can relate it to real life. Some of the topics and activities I will be doing with the students will be growing bacteria and learning about different fats and their breakdown regarding their molecules. Also, we will cover the basic periodic tables to see which beauty products are most toxic. We’ll learn about density by making rock candy. We will also be writing encouraging messages in invisible ink with home supplies and using shaving cream and food coloring to understand how a create a rain cloud. I want to ensure the hands on activities are so fun that they want to redo the experiment again and again and ask the question “WHY?” I want them to understand, much like their life, with science the sky’s the limit.
Written By: Tarana Wroten