John Derian designs PBL curriculum for his 12th grade Environmental Science class at Brooklyn International High School where he has been teaching English Language Learners for the past ten years. John's curriculum is designed to help the diverse English language learners in his class develop their academic, language, and success skills in addition to their content knowledge. While at BIHS, John has also taught 9th & 10th grade biology and physical science. John’s PBL curriculum design employs BIE’s Gold Standard PBL model to help ensure that students engage with deeper and more meaningful learning experiences.
While at BIHS, John helped found the school’s restorative justice program and the BIHS FabLab. Many of the PBL units that John designs, incorporates a design thinking model and the use of tools, materials, and technology often found in a makerspace.
In addition to his work with ELL students, John brings his passion for Project Based Learning and curriculum design outside his classroom by collaborating extensively with other educators. He has designed and facilitated workshops, guest lectured, and mentored teachers through partnerships with The International Public High School Network, The New York Performance Standards Consortium, Math for America, Mastery Collaborative, Digital Ready, the Blended Learning Institute, Long Island University, and Teachers College Columbia University.
Since, 2014, John has been a Master Teacher Fellow with Math for America where he participates in a professional community of science and math educators in NYC focused on strengthening public school STEM education. John was awarded the Excellence in School Technology Award by the New York City Department of Education for his use of podcasting in PBL curriculum to support ELL students. Most recently, John’s project on Star Wars Animal Adaptation and Protein Synthesis was featured in an article in NSTA Reports titled: Science and the Star Wars Universe.
John received a B.S. in Marine Biology and Master of Arts in Teaching (MAT) Secondary Science Education at University of North Carolina Wilmington.