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Idaho teachers honored for STEM work

Staff Reports

A Rathdrum middle school teacher and a Moscow elementary teacher each have won a $2,000 state award in recognition of their achievements in teaching STEM: science, technology, engineering and math.

David Moon of North Idaho STEM Charter Academy and Luella Stelck, a teacher in the Moscow School District, were presented this year’s Governor’s Industry Award for Notable Teaching in STEM.

Moon is known for keeping students discovering, experimenting and continually achieving, the Idaho State Department of Education said. Through rocketry, he teaches the relevance of trigonometry, and he uses robotics and Legos to help students learn to build, program, test and revise products.

Moon also brings guest speakers into the classroom, including representatives of NASA, IBM, Discover Technology, Rathdrum Animal Clinic, Architects West and the Lake Pend Oreille Acoustic Research Detachment.

Stelck teaches at West Park and Lena Whitmore elementary schools. She was nominated for her innovative integration and application of science and technology in the classroom, her professional collaboration with others to bring science and math to life, and her desire to help other teachers understand and apply the inquiry methods of science instruction.

Stelck uses neuroscience, aeronautics, activity-based chemistry, robotics and other theme-based activities to motivate students to use higher cognitive abilities as they connect with the language of science, the education department said.

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