STEM Fellows Spotlight: LeAnn Moore, Loudon Elementary

Updated: Apr 6, 2021

LeAnn Moore (Contributed photo, Loudon County)

PEF's STEM Fellows has had a long-lasting impression on many teachers, but not just in Hamilton County, TN. Since its inception, STEM Fellows has included dozens standout teachers from from school districts throughout Southeast Tennessee and Northwest Georgia. LeAnn Moore, STEM teacher at Loudon Elementary School, participated in the most recent STEM Fellows 7.0 cohort. Moore, who is in her 26th year teaching at Loudon Elementary, began her first year as a STEM teacher in 2018. The problem-based learning (PBL) units, which Moore developed in the first phase of the STEM Fellowship, played an influential role in her teaching and how she designed experiences for her students.

Moore uses the same PBL format for each unit she creates for her students. All of the format's pieces originate from the day her STEM Fellows cohort participated in a PBL unit planning PD, led by PEF’s Michael Stone and Cliff Brittingham. The cohort constructed their own PBL unit from templates they were given, and Moore soon realized how vital the content would be to her teaching strategy. Moore combined multiple templates in a way that made the most sense to her style. “The PBL PD was my favorite class,” shared Moore. “We learned about all the important pieces a PBL unit needed to have, including technology and range of thinking.” The content correlated with her team rubric and helped her to organize her thoughts. Moore applauds STEM Fellows for the support she needed in creating a PBL unit. “This is the first year our school has had a STEM class, so I had to start from scratch,” said Moore. “When I met with our school’s principal, Christie Amburn, to show her the PBL plan I prepared for my students, she was very impressed and told me that ‘this is everything a PBL unit should have." Principal Amburn also ordered STEAM design challenge materials, which Moore incorporated with her PBL unit to cover subject standards. These standards also helped correspond with fellow teachers’ curriculum in her school.

STEM Fellows 7.0 participants after their two-day PD of learning to create their own PBL unit. (L to R) Nikki Russell, LeAnn Moore, Julia Phillips.*