Brian Bartel started working in education in 1995 at Lawrence University in Appleton, WI. Working with Professor Karen Harpp, Brian helped to start a chemical demonstration show for local elementary and middle school students. Called “The Bomb Squad”, Brian used chemical demonstrations to help explain how science works in everyday life. Because of this work, Brian began to explore education, eventually graduating in 1997 with a B.A. in biology and a WI secondary teaching license in biology, chemistry and broadfield science.
In 1998 Brian was hired to teach Biology at New London High School (New London, WI). In 1999, he transferred to Appleton West High School, where he continues to teach today. At West, Brian has taught biology, physical science, biophysical science and chemistry. Brian coordinates www.bartelements.com, which provides lesson plans, moodle and a wordpress blog for his students.
From 2000-2003, Brian was a primary leader for People to People’s “Student Ambassador” trips. Every summer, Brian helped prepare over 180 high school students to travel internationally (including Europe, Great Britain and Ireland, Australia and New Zealand).
In 2001, Brian began to serve the state’s science teacher organization, the Wisconsin Society of Science Teachers (WSST), as WSST’s newsletter editor. In 2002, Brian began to work as co-chair of WSST’s state-wide conference for 2004. He spent two years planning and preparing a conference that provided Wisconsin science teachers the chance to attend 15 workshops, 15 field trips and 125 sessions. During this time as co-chair, Brian handled the financial and management aspects of running the conference, as well as designed the layout for the conference booklet.
In 2006, Brian was elected President-Elect of WSST. Over the next four years, Brian served on the board of directors as President-Elect (one year), President (two years) and Retiring President (one year). In those four years, Brian was instrumental in leading a major overhaul of the association’s strategic plan, adding a 7th WSST district to the state, and advocating science in the state of Wisconsin and beyond.
In June of 2006, Brian worked with Dale Basler to started Periodicity, the podcast of the WSST. Each week the podcast delivered science news and science education with leading scientists, researchers, science writers and other important figures in the field. In 2008, Dale and Brian migrated the show to Lab Out Loud, where it broadcasts for a national audience with the support of the National Science Teachers Association.
In January of 2006, Brian added the position of Technology Liaison to his assignment at Appleton West High School. In this role, Brian helps teachers use technology to increase productivity, analyze data and assist instruction. Brian also communicates building technology issues with the district’s Information Technology department. To honor his work using technology in the classroom, Brian was awarded a Best Buy Te@ch Award in 2007.
Brian has consulted on education projects including the Wisconsin DPI Task Force for Alignment of Science/Technology Standards (2007-2008), State Superintendent’s Task Force on the Next Generation of Assessment (2008-2009), and the NAEP Science Achievement Levels Setting Meeting (2009).
in 2011, Brian’s position changed to science teacher and Technology Curriculum Integration Specialist (TCIS) for Appleton West and Appleton Central High School. As TCIS, Brian provides support for teachers to implement technology in the classroom.
Brian lives in Appleton, WI with his wife Carrie and twins – Jack and Olivia.