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Apollo Teacher to Present at American Psychological Association Workshop

Mike Berndt

Congratulations to Mike Berndt, social studies teacher at Apollo High School! He's been chosen to present at the American Psychological Association's Science Workshop for High School Teachers in August. 

Due to the lack of professional development opportunities specifically designed for high school psychology teachers, Berndt organized and created a regional network of high school psychology teachers in Minnesota about 7 years ago.  He contacted every high school in the state of Minnesota to find out who was teaching psychology and invited them to be part of our group. The name of the regional network is Minnesota Teachers of Psychology in Secondary Schools (MNTOPSS) and they are affiliated with the American Psychological Association. Every year, they hold a conference in May in which teachers share lesson plans, activities and resources in teaching high school psychology.  Last year, 80 high school teachers attended the conference.  Berndt co-authored an article for the APA at the Summit in 2017 on creating regional networks and MNTOPSS was featured: "Building, Guiding, and Sustaining Regional Networks For Psychology Teachers."

In the summer of 2017, Berndt was one of 70 high school psychology teachers from across the nation to be selected to participate in the APA Summit on High School Psychology Education in Ogden, Utah. The goal was to improve how high school psychology is taught.  

In 2018, Berndt was selected to be on the AP Psychology Development Committee and will continue this appointment next year as well. The committee consists of four high school AP psychology teachers and four Psychology professors from across the nation. The task is to create the national AP Psychology Exam that over 300,000 students take each year. The committee writes and reviews multiple choice questions and free response questions that get used each May on the national AP Psychology Exam.

The involvement in these aforementioned activities led to his selection as a "Master Teacher" at the Oregon State University Psychological Science Workshop for High School Psychology Teachers.  His role as a master teacher will be to lead 25 psychology teachers from across the nation in best practices in teaching high school psychology and showing them opportunities to network with other psychology teachers.