Today we’re introducing you to our EPeep, Kelly Hollis! Kelly is our Global Head of Science who brings over 13 years of Science and Maths teaching experience, a Masters in eLearning and a passion for its effective implementation. Kelly also has been named on the Flipped Learning Global Initiative’s Top 100 Educators and is a certified Google Innovator. Kelly fervently aims to engage and empower teachers everywhere to explore how EP can help to inspire their students to improve learning outcomes.
I live in Sydney with my husband, Brett and our almost 5 year old Staffy, Farah (named after Robbie Farah as I am a bit of a Wests Tigers tragic!). My husband and I met online in 2012 and were married in Fiji at the Shangri La in July of 2014 after he proposed there in May the year before! We have been to Fiji 9 times since we met and are already planning our next trip for 2020!
I discovered F45 in 2018 and have attended over 500 sessions, including a bunch of sessions with other EPeeps who love F45 as well! I am about to get surgery on my knees though, so I’m not sure whether F45 is going to feature much in my future, but I am looking forward to find something different to challenge me in regards to my health and fitness.
Kelly smiling after training on the bottom left
I have always had a passion for Science. When I did my HSC I studied two Sciences and knew it was something I wanted to focus on when I went to university. I originally enrolled in a Forensic Science course straight out of high school. I actually started a number of degrees before I ended up finishing my Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Education – the joys of being an indecisive Libran! I have no regrets about chopping and changing so much as it allowed me to explore lots of different things (all in the area of Science) before I found what I really loved, which was Science education.
Why become an EPeep?
I met the team at CONASTA in 2016 and signed my students up to take part in the Science World Championships. The uptake across all year levels was incredible and the data that was provided allowed me to show the benefits of the platform to our College executive so that we could official come on board in 2017. I was blown away by the way that the students took to EP and I loved what the company was trying to do for teachers and students, so when the opportunity came on board to share this with other teachers, I jumped at the chance.
I also thought I’d mention that I love going to conferences and meeting as many teachers as possible. I have attended the most conferences of anyone in the team! My first conference was less than a fortnight after I officially started with the company!
The Science team are working on creating lots of new resources for Year 11-12 students. This includes a whole range of brand new lessons as well as exam preparation resources, which will be launched in 2020. We are also working on improving the rigor of the junior Science content, whilst also making the lessons more engaging!
The Peer Review function is amazing. It has been found that students will increase their energy in a task when they know that someone else is going to read it. The Peer Review feature provides students with the opportunity to have their work read by someone else other than their teacher. It also allows the students to improve on their work by allowing them to see what their peers are producing. The fact that it is automatic and anonymous also means that the process can occur quickly and easily for both the teacher and the students.
I also love the Compare Results feature within the Assessment side of the platform. Being able to see that your students have developed an understanding of the content you have taught or have mastered particular skills in a topic is so rewarding as a teacher.
Most excited about…
In the time I have been with EP I have seen some huge changes. I am so excited to see where we can take this platform and I don’t just mean geographically – although the international push is super exciting! I’m looking forward to the new ways that we can help teachers solve problems in their classrooms in order to free them up for the more important things a teacher needs to do, such as build relationships with their students. The growth of the company has also resulted in our teams getting bigger and I am excited to spend more time with ‘Team NSW’ in 2020 as we now have a collective space that we can regularly meet in.
3 main points about EP
i) EP is a one-stop shop for teachers that includes curriculum-aligned content plus the tools to deliver it
ii) The data you get from EP is phenomenal and will save you hours in marking and analysing
iii) The support you will receive from the team at EP is second to none!!
Who would you like to meet?
Over the years I’ve been lucky enough to meet some of the celebrities that I’ve followed including Tim Curry, David Duchovny and all of the boys from Bon Jovi! But if I had to choose just one person to meet it would probably be Charles Darwin. As a Biologist I have spent a lot of time teaching students about the work of Darwin and in particular the hardships he faced trying to get the world to understand his theory of evolution. I guess my question for him would be what gave him the strength to keep going against all of the backlash that he faced to be able to change the beliefs of so many people.
Thanks Kelly for sharing and what a colourful journey it has been. When we asked Kelly if there was anything else she would like to share she added the following:
I did competitive cheerleading for 7 years. I was forced into retirement after dislocating my knee 3 times in 18 months – one of which I did on the floor at Nationals while competing on my 30th birthday! I love live music and when I find an artist I really love I see them every opportunity I get. I have seen Bon Jovi perform 27 times in 3 countries, I’ve also seen Kylie Minogue 11 times (the first time when I was 7!), P!nk 7 times and Nickleback 4 times!!
Well, you can definitely get a sense of Kelly’s energy and drive, and that she is a huge asset to EP.