Consultant Information and Course Descriptions

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Mark Welch – Alpena High School,  Alpena, AR

Pre-AP Biology


DSCF0028Ed Braddy - J. W. Mitchell High School, New Port Richey, FL
AP Biology – Teachers New to AP

Mr. Braddy has been teaching Advanced Placement Biology since 1991.   He currently has an AP Biology syllabus approved by the College Board, and he teaches the course at JW Mitchell High School in New Port Richey, Fl.   He is a reader for the AP Biology Exam, and he has also served as a consultant for one-day workshops and week-long summer institutes for the past nine years.  More recently, Mr. Braddy  wrote one of the four Planning and Pacing Guides for the revised AP Biology course.   The guide can be found on the AP Biology Home Page at AP Central.    Mr. Braddy was named Teacher of the Year at JW Mitchell High School in 2010, and he also serves as Science Department Chair at the school.  He has attended the International Science and Engineering Fair with his students for a number of years, and he also enjoys working with student leaders as the Student Council adviser at his school.

Course Description:  The 2015 Biology APSI will focus on preparing teachers to teach the AP Biology course.   Participants will take an in-depth look at the comprehensive framework to see how it is organized into Big Ideas, Enduring Understandings, Essential Knowledge statements, Learning Objectives, and Science Practices.  They will take a look at new approaches to teaching biology that will include student-directed, teacher-facilitated instructional activities, including student-directed laboratories.   Participants will be engaged in extensive open-ended laboratory work that focuses on topics in each of the four big ideas, modeling the science practices that teachers will expect their students to master as they study biology.   Participants will also get an overview of how the 2015 AP Biology Exam was graded and will further explore how to maximize student success on the AP Biology Exam.   Through practice, sharing, discussions, and modeling, participants will become more skilled in instructing their students to become more successful in this rigorous program.

What to Bring:

• Good examples of student-directed, teacher-facilitated instructional activities that you might like to share, if you have had an opportunity to look at the revised curriculum framework: (

• Calculators (use of mathematical routines is Science Practice #2)

• Your favorite goggles/aprons for lab investigations

Please bring a flash drive as there are many activities and a great deal of extra information that you may want to download.


Pat Mote – Georgia Perimeter State College, Dunwoody, GA

AP Biology – Teachers Experencied in AP


 Janice Willingham – Westmore High School, Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

AP Chemistry – Teachers New to AP


photo-AbronowitzTodd Abronowitz, Parrish Episcopal School, Dallas, Texas
AP Chemistry – Experienced AP Teachers

Todd Abronowitz currently teaches all levels of chemistry at Parish Episcopal School in Dallas. Previously, he was the lead AP Chemistry teacher for Dallas ISD. Prior to this, he has taught at John Paul II High School in Plano (and served as science department chair) for five years. He has also taught at Creekview High School, in the Carrollton-Farmers Branch ISD for 8 years, South Garland High School (Garland ISD) for six years. He has served as the lead chemistry teacher at Creekview High School. Since starting his teaching career in 1990, he has taught regulars chemistry, honors chemistry, Pre-AP Chemistry and Advanced Placement Chemistry. He has started three AP chemistry programs, at South Garland HS, Creekview HS, and most recently at John Paul II HS. He is involved with several professional organizations: Science Teachers Association of Texas (STAT), Associated Chemistry Teachers of Texas (ACT2), and the American Chemical Society. He has presented workshops at several STAT Conferences for the Advancement of Science Teaching and Southwest Regional Meeting of the American Chemical Society. He has presented at two-day conferences and one-day conferences for the College Board and been the presenter for APSI in Texas and Arkansas. He served as a State Chemistry Textbook Review member for Texas in 2001. He was co-founder of a Traveling Science Show that preformed shows across the DFW Metroplex. He wrote his own laboratory manual and study materials for use in his AP chemistry class. Mr. Abronowitz has received numerous awards including NMSI All-American Teacher of the Year 2012, Shultz Award for outstanding high school chemistry teacher from the DFW section of the ACS, Radio Shack National Teacher Award, Associated Chemistry Teachers of Texas Teacher of the Year in 2000, and Wal-Mart Teacher of the Year 1996.

Course Description:The AP Chemistry institute is designed to assist AP teachers in building the foundations for success in teaching AP Chemistry.  Emphasis will be placed on the rigor of the material that students need to be successful on the AP Chemistry exam. An emphasis will be placed on the new curriculum framework and its implementation in your classroom.  We will review the requirements on the course audit and the syllabus requirements.  Time will be allowed for best practices and for sharing ideas as a group.  Laboratory investigations will be incorporated with the discussion of the theory, with special emphasis on student-inquiry labs.

Topics will include the following:

  • New test format
  • Equilibrium
  • Thermodynamics
  • Kinetics (non-calculator and calculator approaches)
  • Electrochemistry
  • multiple choice strategies
  • acid-base chemistry
  • atomic structure and periodicity
  • Topics to be presented and sequence followed will be determined by the group as a whole.

Participants’ areas of concern will be determined using an on-line survey, the results of which will determine the topics to be presented and sequence dollowed during the week.

What to Bring:

  • Proper laboratory attire (goggles, apron, lab coat, closed-toe shoes, etc.)

What participants will take with them: An electronic of everything developed for Pre-AP Chemistry and AP Chemistry by the lead consultant


KaestnerBrian Kaestner, Saint Mary’s Hall, San Antonio, Texas

AP Environmental Science

Brian currently teaches AP Environmental Science and AP Human Geography at Saint Mary’s Hall in San Antonio, where he has been on the faculty for 32 years. In 1993, Brian received the “Special Recognition Award” from College Board and was a TEA state nominee for the “Presidential Awards for Excellence.”  In 2000, he received the “Siemens Award for Advanced Placement Teaching.” With a B.S. in Biology and an M.S. in Environmental Management, Brian also serves with the College Board as an Advanced Placement consultant and as a table leader at the APES reading.  He is also the moderator for the College Board APES Community Forum.  A veteran of both public (PA) and private (NY, TX) schools, Brian is in his thirty-sixth year teaching and coaching soccer.

 Course Description: The unique focus for the week will be the investigation of multidisciplinary nature of the environmental science curriculum through both terrestrial and aquatic ecology and the unique ecosystems in the Hot Springs area. Environmental Science is the most multidisciplinary of the AP science subjects.  This workshop will incorporate both lecture and laboratory aspects of the course. Designed for both the experienced and novice AP Environmental Science instructor, this course will consider the challenges of continuing and enhancing a successful APES program. Participants will complete a variety of field activities, including an array of useful techniques for analyzing plant and animal populations in both aquatic and terrestrial ecosystems.  Methods will incorporate both traditional techniques and calculator-based labs.  The most useful websites for APES teachers and students will be investigated thoroughly. This institute will incorporate significant fieldwork, and participants should be prepared for light hiking over short distances.

 What to Bring: Participants should bring a minimum 1G flash drive for download of all course materials.The instructor will provide insect repellent and sunscreen as needed, but participants might want to bring a camera, binoculars, notebook, walking boots or shoes, and hat for fieldwork.  Participants should have one pair of shoes that they do not mind getting wet and/or muddy.


monson.JPGBrian Monson – Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences, and the Arts, Hot Springs, AR

AP Physics 1

Brian Monson earned a BS in physics from the University of Missouri – Rolla and a PhD in physics from the University of Arkansas – Fayetteville. He has taught both AP physics classes or the equivalent college courses for 24 years. He started his career at the University of Tulsa and has taught at the Oklahoma School for Science and Math. At OSSM he developed the physics curriculum for their regional centers and taught Physics C at their first remote site in Drumright, OK. He is currently the chair of the science department at the Arkansas School for Mathematics, Sciences, and the Arts in Hot Springs. He teaches Physics C as well as several other science classes including courses on acoustics and optics and is director of the West-Central Regional Science Fair. He was awarded the Siemens AP Educator of the Year award for Arkansas in 2009.

 Course Description: This session will cover the new Physics 1. It will be helpful for both beginning and experienced AP teachers. Sessions will include choosing topics to cover and how much time to devote to each, designing an assessment plan that is an effective predictor of exam success, incorporating demos and labs, and using technology effectively. Special sessions on the development and grading of the exams and how to prepare your students for the test will also be scheduled. A large percentage of class time will be spent on the new objectives and making sure the participants know the differences between them and Physics B. We will also spend time talking about the differences in pedagogy the new course requires. Some time will be spent working problems to refresh content knowledge, to learn how to write AP-style exam problems, and to gain an understanding of the level of teaching and learning required in an AP Physics class. Be sure to bring a calculator and 20 copies of a lab or activity handout to share with the group. Also bring a laptop with Vernier’s LoggerPro software installed for video analysis labs if possible. A free demo version is available from


IMG_5282Cedric French-Galan, Westside High School, Houston, Texas

AP Calculus AB – Teachers New to AP


scott passScott Pass – McCallum High School, Austin, TX

AP Calculus, Teachers Experienced in AP


Europe-659Bob Smidt – Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, CA

AP Statistics

Bob Smidt (Ph.D. Wyoming, M.S. Rutgers, B.S. Manhattan) is professor emeritus and former chair of the Statistics Department at Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo, where he was named a Distinguished Faculty (a teaching award).  He has taught Statistics at four colleges, two junior colleges, an Air Force Base, and a prison (a captive audience).  He has been a question leader, table leader, and reader for the AP Statistics exam and has presented one-day and week-long workshops to AP Statistics high school teachers around the country.  He has broad statistical consulting experience and has contributed articles to a variety of journals.

 Course Description: Participants will gain insights into the essentials of the AP Statistics course as well as techniques for presenting the ideas with which students struggle the most. The workshop structure will be flexible, providing opportunities for participants to request discussion of specific topics.

 Topics will include the following:

  • Important ideas from the four major content areas:
    • Exploratory data analysis
    • Data collection
    • Probability
    • Statistical inference
  • Concepts that are particularly difficult for students
  • Teaching strategies and lecture suggestions
  • Approaches for taking the AP Statistics exam
  • Content of the 2015 AP Statistics exam
  • Interesting and pedagogically useful questions from old exams

 What participants should bring:

  • Questions and topics for discussion

Optional supplies:

  • Calculator