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What's Up Magazine

Benjamin Lorenz

Jan 09, 2017 03:33PM ● By Cate Reynolds

Benjamin Lorenz

St. Vincent Pallotti High School, Laurel

Years teaching at current school: 7

Currently teaching: 9th–12th grade AP Physics, Honors Physics, Electrical Engineering, Applied Physical Science, Physics for Future Presidents, and Foundations of Faith

Proudest teaching moments: “Last year, I had a student who had failed miserably through the first three quarters on every test (his highest test score had been a 42). Early in the fourth quarter, he decided he was going to pass the next test but he needed my help. He was attentive in class the entire unit and came and spoke with me after school twice a week to stay on top of it. Finally he took the test and turned it in with cautious optimism. As soon as the class was dismissed I graded his test first and he had earned an 82!”

Teaching philosophy: “I want my students to learn how to solve problems for themselves. As a science teacher, I recognize that the moments that have the most educational value are the ones in which a student conquers a challenge and gets to take credit for their effort and ingenuity. I want them to break out of the thinking that there is one way to perform an experiment or solve a problem. My goal is to train them to be scientists rather than memorizing science facts.”

Toughest challenge facing educators: “High school students are used to science class being lecture-based. They are so used to focusing on notes and lectures that they don’t realize they need to expend their mental efforts on comprehending an experiment that can teach them much more about the world than I can. They need to restructure their minds to focus on interpreting data and critiquing methodology rather than trying to remember the stuff that’s going to be on the test.”

Ben Lorenz is a brilliant science teacher, who goes well beyond the classroom to educate our students at St. Vincent Pallotti High School. When you walk through our Sister Lucy Lobby, you find Mr. Lorenz’s Physics students dropping balls, measuring distances, and determining velocity, and the students love it! The energy he brings to the classroom and beyond is infectious. Outside the classroom, Mr. Lorenz serves as our master of ceremony at our awards assemblies. At football games, he announces all the plays, and you can hear Ben bellow a resounding, “Pallotti First Down!” He also coordinates intramural sports for all of our students, and often you can find Mr. Lorenz out on the court playing with the students. He does all of this while also serving as Co-Science Department Chair. He passionately cares about his students, and he passionately cares about his subject matter” —Tom Durkin, Assistant Principal for Academics

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