Winning the Presidential Award is not only a great honor, but a capstone to my career. Over the past 20 years I have aspired to be a teacher worthy of this type of recognition, and the support of co-workers, mentors, students and families have made it possible. An award such as this validates my classroom practice of developing student driven, inquiry-based education where the most important question has been transformed from,“What do I know?” to “Why do I know this?”
Gregory (Greg) Sand is in his 20th year of teaching mathematics, spending the past 14 years at Central High School where his teaching experiences have ranged from first year Algebra to Post Advanced Placement Calculus classes. He currently teaches International Baccalaureate Math Higher Level, Calculus III, Differential Equations, Number Theory, and Matrix Algebra.
Greg provides students with the opportunity to learn mathematics through student-centered experiences. Students work in teams to discover and prove mathematical concepts while connecting them to prior learning. By placing the emphasis on student learning instead of teacher knowledge, he has a classroom that attempts to embrace the standards set out by the National Council of Teachers of Mathematics.
Outside of the classroom, Greg works with Central’s competitive Mathematics Team, leads district wide professional development activities focused on improving mathematics classroom instruction, and teaches for the University of Nebraska—working with both undergraduate and graduate students. He has recently completed a five year term as a Robert Noyce Master Teaching Fellow.
He earned a B.S. in mathematics from Doane College, a M.S. in mathematics from the University of Nebraska Omaha, and is currently completing his doctoral work at the University of Nebraska Lincoln. He is a 7–12 certified mathematics teacher.