Alana Wells

Skyline High School science teacher Alana Wells

Name: Alana Wells

Position: Biology teacher at Skyline High School

Years experience: Second year at Skyline, 13th year in Idaho Falls School District 91

What made you want to become a teacher?

I didn’t always know I wanted to be a teacher. I was taking general classes in college and just really liked the biology classes. I looked into different options for careers with a Biology degree and teaching was one. It just felt like it would be the right fit for me and it has been ever since.

What is your favorite part about teaching high school science?

I truly love my students. This year is so rewarding because my ninth grade students are the last seventh grade class that I taught at Eagle Rock. They are amazing kids and I am so fortunate to be able to teach them again! I even get to teach some seniors that I taught in seventh grade. I love watching them grow and learn.

How have things changed at Skyline since the school began its alternating-day class schedule?

It’s wonderful that we don’t have to quarantine the students as much but it’s been hard for everyone. The workload has doubled for teachers and students are struggling to complete their online work. A lot of students feel like they only have school twice a week when really they have school five days a week… {span}I just remind them that this hybrid schedule is temporary and put in place because of the pandemic that is happening all over the world. We are all learning to be flexible.

Has the virus changed the way you handle biology labs and practical experiments?

We are still doing labs, just with more caution and sanitation. I am fortunate to have eight sinks in my classroom. I have the students wash their hands when they come into class.

District 91 has a recommended order for high school science classes. What do you think the best approach to those subjects is?

I like the idea of having a path for students to follow but I also think they need choice. They need science, but not all students need the same type of courses. We offer a variety of electives they can take to fulfill their science goals and learn to love science.

Brennen is the main education reporter for the Post Register. Contact him with news tips at 208-542-6711.