The ‘Scientific Method’ of Connections in Rural Learning:
3 questions with Alyssa Moore
How Remake Learning’s new Rural Outreach Coordinator plans to combine experience in STEM instruction and curriculum design to find connections, resources, and opportunities
From dreaming of becoming a dentist to serving as a Curriculum Specialist with Intermediate Unit 1 (IU1), Alyssa Moore credits her family and high school biology teacher for inspiring her to take the leap into education.
Alyssa grew up in Pittsburgh’s South Hills suburbs and attended West Jefferson Hills School District. Coupled with her experience supporting teachers of the 25 districts of Washington, Fayette, and Greene counties, Alyssa is a true champion of rural learning. As she dives into the role of Remake Learning’s Rural Outreach Coordinator, we spoke with Alyssa about her experience in education and hopes for her new position.
Q1: As a previous science teacher, can you speak to the challenges of STEM education in rural communities?
A1: I started with IU1 in 2014 teaching seventh through 12th -grade science in alternative education and special education campus schools, which opened my eyes to some of the challenges of rural STEM education. STEM isn’t necessarily limited for rural learners; it
sometimes just looks a little different. For example, programming may incorporate more agricultural studies into the mix in addition to robotics and computer science. Rural areas can have a more difficult time accessing stable broadband internet or professional resources to be able to make real-world connections in STEM for students. We sometimes have to try a little harder to show off how important and impactful STEM really is in our communities.
Q2: What inspired you to branch into educational curriculum?
A2: I initially started my teaching career with a bachelor’s degree and a biology certification for grades 7-12. During my first year, I found curriculum design really interesting because I was basically creating lessons as I taught them. You could say I was building the plane as I flew it! I enjoyed the challenge and found the work very appealing, which drove me to pursue my master’s degree in curriculum. I take great joy in helping fellow educators and thought I would be able to bring a valuable voice to curriculum design. Serving as a Curriculum Specialist at IU1, I bring my love of people and science together to support teachers throughout our region.
Q3: What do you hope to accomplish as Remake Learning’s Rural Outreach Coordinator?
A3: I think that schools and organizations in rural southwestern Pennsylvania and northern West Virginia don’t always receive the recognition they deserve for the amazing things they are doing with and for their students. I hope to be able to share those stories and uplift schools in rural communities to have a louder voice. I also value communication and collaboration and would like to provide schools the opportunity to connect and learn from each other to continue providing equitable learning experiences.
As Alyssa says, learning is done by doing. Get involved with Remake Learning’s dynamic network of rural educators at remakelearning.org/rural and connect with Alyssa at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Published October 15, 2021