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Johnston receives national teaching award

Ben Johnston at Bob Jones High School has received the Outstanding Biology Teacher Award from the National Association of Biology Teachers. CONTRIBUTED
Ben Johnston at Bob Jones High School has received the Outstanding Biology Teacher Award from the National Association of Biology Teachers. CONTRIBUTED

MADISON – Ben Johnston at Bob Jones High School has received the Outstanding Biology Teacher Award from the National Association of Biology Teachers.

Johnston represents Alabama as the only teacher in the state to earn this honor.

“Outstanding biological and life science teaching is essential to modern society and to human survival in the future. Such teaching exists, and this (national award) represents a specific way to recognize such excellence,” Jennifer Hutchison said. Hutchison at Alabama A&M University is the Alabama director for the Outstanding Biology Teacher Awards program.

A committee consisting of experienced teachers, administrators and biologists employed in industry or education selected Johnston from top candidates from across the state. “The selection committee was particularly impressed by the positive relationships Ben Johnston has with his students and his student-centered classroom, with students leading their learning,” Hutchison said.

At Bob Jones, Johnston led the Envirothon Team to numerous recognitions, including a state championship and a berth to the national meet in Missouri last summer. Johnston was among Bob Jones teachers pioneering the ‘flipped classroom’ concept, which uses podcasts or vodcasts for students to review at home and take notes.

The National Association of Biology Teachers gives each honoree a special award. Award winners and their schools receive certificates, as well as public and professional recognition. Recipients are awarded a year’s complimentary membership in the National Association of Biology Teachers (NABT) and are honored at a special ceremony in conjunction with the NABT national conference.

The 2016 NABT national conference will convene on Nov. 3- 6 in Denver, Colo. The annual NABT conference features four days of renowned speakers, hands-on workshops, informative sessions and special events. The conference “is a strong resource for teaching biology and life science in the 21st century,” Hutchison said.

Additionally, Johnston will be recognized at the Alabama State Science Teachers Association meeting in spring 2017.

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