New science teacher begins to settle in

There is a new face in the science department. During the summer, Rebecca Matoska was hired to teach biology, anatomy and physiology. 

“[Teaching at West Shore] has been a great experience thus far,” she said. “I enjoy the curiosity of students here. I also enjoy that students are willing to pursue the things about which they are passionate — both in and out of the classroom.”

Matoska moved to Florida during the summer.

“Originally, I am from a small town called Brooklyn, Connecticut. Most recently, I lived in Colorado Springs, Colorado before moving to Florida,” she said. “I have been teaching high school for three years. Prior to West Shore, I taught at Atlas Prep in Colorado Springs.”

She has had to adjust her teaching methods to accommodate pandemic protocols. 

“Like everyone, I think I mostly worked to make assignments translatable to the online space,” she said. “I think science can be really engaging, and so finding good simulations, tutorials and electronic visuals has been a priority in my lesson planning. This has been a challenging year for everyone. I think making sure we all prioritize self-care so we are recharged and ready to help those around us is more important than ever.”

Matoska teaches freshman Ella Dorfman.

“Her method of teaching is very engaging, and I can tell that she wants us to enjoy biology,” she said. “What makes her class so much cooler is that she actually has a background in science, pushing the topics a little deeper when she explains more.”

Dorfman said she enjoys working with other students in the class.

“Having two good friends in Ms. Matoska’s class has made learning more manageable too,” she said. “We text each other if we need help and collaborate on assignments and projects. Two minds are better than one.”

Dorfman says that Matoska is a likable teacher and that she is a good fit for teaching biology.

“If you teach a subject well, and are not an evil or unlikeable human being, you are probably a good fit,” she said. “When we hear of how top-ranked West Shore is in the nation, we should have high standards for our teachers. She exceeds those standards.”

By Jason Dela Cruz