Kelli’s first exposure to modeling was in the 1990s, when she took the Methods of Teaching Physics course required for the certification program at Arizona State. A few years later, she participated in Phase I of the Modeling Instruction Program. Here she spent three summers as an awestruck rookie alongside some of the best high school physics teachers in the country. With a great deal of support from mentor teachers, Kelli continued to teach in Phoenix-area Title I and charter schools for 18 years, spending summers as a Modeling Workshop leader in physics, mathematics, and middle school science.
In the fall of 2012, Kelli somewhat reluctantly left her beloved teaching position at Arizona School for the Arts to become the Teacher in Residence for the Arizona State University physics department. As Teacher in Residence, she coordinates the Learning Assistant program, mentors students interested in becoming teachers, and instructs teaching pedagogy and methods courses for ASU’s new B.S. Physics degree program, which offers physics students a concentration in secondary education.
Reflecting on her experience with the Modeling community, Kelli said, “In my opinion, the best aspect of Modeling Instruction has been interaction with insightful and dedicated teachers, who work daily to make themselves obsolete by empowering students to build their own models of the world.”