Ms. Birch

 My name is Lori Birch, I have been teaching for over 10 years in a variety of subjects ranging from middle school science, high school biology and physical science, robotics to agriculture education.  I have a passion for teaching through a project based learning allowing students to explore their own possibilities and pursue careers based upon their interest.  This is why I feel Career and Technical Education (CTE) is so important.  This has led me to develop a STEM Program here at West Grand.  

Science Technology Engineering and Math with Arts, and Information Technology programs prepare students for the twenty-first century workplace by developing skills in critical thinking and reasoning, information literacy, collaboration, self-direction, and invention. The program I have worked to create combines computer technology courses with robotics and engineering courses to offer students these essential twenty-first century skills for the workforce.

I grew up in central Illinois raising horses and working in the shop with my dad who was an implement mechanic (worked on tractors).  I spent more time in the shop working with him than playing with toys, which helped me develop my passion for mechanics and designing and engineering.  We have an ongoing joke in my family as to who has the tinkering gene and who doesn't.  This is why I love teaching robotics helping students to solve problems and design/engineer things to do a job.  This teaches students the same skills I learned with my dad as a kid which can allow them to expand their horizons and see their ability to solve real world problems.

This love for my horses and mechanics led me to pursue a degree in Agriculture Education which I obtained from Southern Illinois University in Carbondale.  I returned to add a Science endorsement after taking a long term substitute job which allowed me to diversify my portfolio.  This diversification took another role after teaching science here at WGHS, when I decided  to pursue my Master of Science Education from Montana State University.  With the STEM program in the works I have also decided to further diversify my education and add an Information Technology Certificate to my resume also aiding me in the courses I will be teaching in the future.

For those of you that have known me for years you may see that I finally got married in 2014.  Gary and I love living in Big Horn Park where we can enjoy nature, snow and all of the fun that it brings.  We spend our free time hiking and skiing which is why we love living in Kremmling.