Tom Brown is the physics teacher at Watagua High School here in Boone. As a high school teacher, Brown has the ability to influence young minds and encourage an understanding of physics and how things work. Read below to hear more about Mr. Brown and why he loves to teach physics.
Q: What do you love about teaching?
A: I love interacting and challenging the students about their understanding about physics. Most of them think that they have a good understanding of how the world works, but they are usually quite wrong. I enjoy helping them gain a better understanding of how things actually work.
Q: Why should someone become a teacher?
A: Someone should become a teacher because they enjoy being around young adults and want to help them develop, both academically and as individuals. When I first started teaching I thought it was all about teaching physics but now I realize it's more about the helping the students learn more than just physics. If someone thinks that teaching is going to be an easy job they need to find something else to do. While teaching is very challenging, the rewards far outweigh the difficulties.
Q: What is your favorite physics topic?
A: I enjoy teaching about energy. It is such an abstract concept that can be applied to all topics that I teach. Energy impacts so much in our world that I feel it is the most important topic I develop in my classroom.
Q: What is your favorite teaching moment?
A: What I have really been enjoying over the last few years are the “recycled rockets” that I have my students build. This generation seems to have moved away from building something from random parts and seeing how it turns out. I purchase rocket engines for my students and then in groups they build rockets and we go outside and launch them. It’s great to see the successes as well as the failures, because we can learn so much from both.