Sara Pollan, a biology instructor on the Holmes Community College Grenada Campus, served as one of the presenters for the Annual Mississippi Science Teachers Association (MSTA) conference held Oct. 23-25 at the Golden Nugget in Biloxi. She has been a member of MSTA since she began teaching in 2003 and has presented at the conference many times.
“For this year’s conference, I presented a session on Active Learning Strategies in the Biology Classroom,” Pollan said. “I used information from our department chair Dr. Antoine Gates through his STEM Talk sessions, “Essential Teaching Principles” by Maryelle Weimer (recommended by Dr. Jenny Jones) and “Interactive Lecturing” by Barkley and Major (recommended by Dr. Kathryn Cox). We went through 22 different strategies to keep classes interesting and engaging.
“We had about 20 participants in the session,” Pollan said. “I couldn’t have made it through the session without the help of Leah Hollingsworth, a biology teacher from Grenada High School. We attended sessions from other presenters from Sunday afternoon until Tuesday afternoon. It was a great opportunity to meet other instructors in our field and learn from their sessions as well.”
Pollan holds a Bachelor of Science in biochemistry with minors in biology and physics from Delta State University, as well as a Master of Education in curriculum and instruction with an emphasis in secondary science education, and further master’s level work, from Clemson University. She is the outreach coordinator for the Grenada Higher Education Association, a board member on the Grenada County Forestry Association, and Treasurer for the Rosebloom Recreational Park in my community. She also attends church and is involved with the youth ministry at Friendship Baptist Church in Grenada.
Prior to employment at Holmes, Pollan taught at Grenada High School. She also has teaching experience with South Panola High School and Charleston High, as well. Pollan and her husband, Garrett Pollan, reside in Grenada. She has four children: Edi Rose Blaylock, Benton Blaylock, Olivia Pollan and Eli Pollan. The Pollans use their vacation time to travel to different places to camp and ride horses. They have longhorn cows, horses, donkeys, chickens, ducks, turkeys and an Australian Shephard, Colt.